GE makes good on Healthymagination initiative

By Molly Merrill
04:48 PM
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GE Healthcare officials made several announcements Wednesday in New York concerning the company’s $6 billion Healthymagination initiative, which aims at investing in technologies that improve healthcare.

Officials announced a $250 million equity fund to invest in healthcare technology companies that focus on three broad areas:

* Broad-based diagnostics, including imaging, home health, patient monitoring, molecular diagnostics, pathology, novel imaging agents and other technologies for disease diagnosis.
* Healthcare information technology, including electronic medical records, clinical information systems, healthcare information exchanges and value-added data services.
* Life sciences, including tools for research and development in biopharmaceuticals and stem cells and technologies for manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals and vaccines.

Officials say the fund will draw on capabilities from GE Healthcare, GE Capital and GE Global Research and have a global footprint.

"The creation of the GE Healthymagination Fund reaffirms our commitment to innovation in healthcare to bring better health to more people," GE Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Immelt said. "As GE works on solutions to healthcare`s biggest challenges, it is vitally important that we support the development of companies with promising technologies or business models that are aligned with our strategy and have the potential to shape the future of healthcare. This includes smarter processes and technologies that measurably increase access to healthcare, reduce the cost of delivery and improve quality. The Healthymagination Fund gives us an opportunity to work with emerging companies to support their development, as well as provide them access to our technology base and our global presence."

GE officials also announced that the company was purchasing certain assets of ONI Medical Systems, Inc., a provider of magnetic resonance imaging services headquartered in Wilmington, Mass. Financial terms were not disclosed.

"One of the cornerstones of GE's Healthymagination vision is to develop and invest in technologies that increase quality, improve access and decrease costs. In line with this vision, the addition of ONI's products enhances our magnetic resonance business," said Jim Davis, vice president and general manager of GE Healthcare's global MR business. "It gives us an opportunity to explore technologies that will increase patient access for claustrophobic patients, products with a smaller footprint and premium image quality, and specialty systems that provide advanced, cost-effective MR patient imaging."

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