“Murata Vios plans to expand its foot prints across tier II & III cities”

Dr. Ashutosh Mundkur – VP of Sales & Marketing Murata Vios shares his views on technology adoption during Covid-19 pandemic, company's activities and future plans, healthcare innovation, government's policies and much more

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Murata Vios, a Japanese medical technology company based in Bangalore manufactures remote monitoring devices that help lower the cost of care by optimizing the management of patients throughout the continuum of care. The company has R&D facilities in Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra and Delhi, and globally in the US and Japan.
In an interaction with the BioVoice, Dr. Ashutosh Mundkur, Vice President, Sales & Marketing Murata Vios shared his views on technology adoption during Covid-19 pandemic, company’s activities and future plans, healthcare innovation, government’s policies and much more.

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How has the Covid-19 pandemic accelerated the use of IoT sensors and remote monitoring services in healthcare? 
The healthcare sector has undergone huge transformation with the pandemic. The industry had to reevaluate and learn, unlearn and relearn in way that wasn’t even imagined before. Remote monitoring has proven to be a huge advantage during the pandemic and this will continue to flourish in future. Remote Monitoring Services reduced the physical interaction between a patient and a healthcare worker, thereby, reducing the spread of infection. During the second wave of the pandemic we all witnessed a very depressing scenario with shortage of beds, staff etc.
Remote monitoring services played an impactful role in bridging this gap. Remote monitoring devices, such as the Vios Monitoring Services, enabled a medical practitioner and nurses to monitor a patient’s health 24/7 without having to physically visit him at the bedside. This saved time and helped the healthcare practitioners to focus on more patient centric activities. Simultaneously, because of IoT and remote monitoring devices patients could be treated in a home-hospital environment and remedial actions were proactive instead of reactive. This also enabled hospital beds to be accessible to critically ill patients.
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What are the offerings from Murata Vios in terms of medical-grade IoT sensors for Indian clients?
Murata Vios has a wireless remote monitoring system, namely the Vios Monitoring System, which monitors your vital signs. The system can aggregate data from other third-party sensors for Temperature and Blood Pressure. The vital signs that it monitors are 7 lead ECG, Spo2, Heart Rate, Respiratory Rate, Pulse Rate and Posture.
The system allows monitoring of multiple patients simultaneously. Customizable alarms notify when established limits have been exceeded. It also provides reports with trends and post event reports for analysis. Viewing options facilitate easy retrieval and review of all alarm-related information.
The light-weight and wireless nature of the system provides freedom to patients to move around while being continuously monitored. It is an an easy to deploy system which leverages the hospital’s existing wireless network, and  can easily integrate with the existing hospital system.
The Vios Monitoring System can be used in different scenarios such as Ward Monitoring, Intra and Inter Hospital Monitoring, Ambulances and Home Hospital.
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How is the FDA-cleared Vios Monitoring Systems helping to reduce costs for hospitals and patients and improve safety?
The Vios Monitoring System as mentioned earlier is a 24/7 wireless remote monitoring system. Let me explain its economic benefits both for the patient’s as well as from the hospital’s perspective.
Patient’s perspective: One of the reasons a patient remains in ICU is because he/she needs monitoring 24/7. Vios exactly serves this purpose and enables 24/7 monitoring even outside an ICU. So for patients who require 24/7 monitoring but do not need to remain in ICU can be moved to general wards without compromising continuous monitoring. This way it benefits the patients economically. Secondly, with VMS the patient is always under constant medical observation which implies healthcare practitioners are able to take action before the situation turns critical. This is an economic gain in the longer run and also reduces the physical and emotional strain that a patient undergoes
Hospital’s perspective: The hospital is able to monitor a patient continuously even outside the ICU which enables them to free up ICU beds more quickly and easily and help them to cater to more critically ill patients. This way they can admit more patients in the ICU while simultaneously being able to cater to not so critically ill patients.
Since VMS also reduces the need to visit a patient physically every time, the burden on the clinical staff is reduced, which also implies that it enables the hospital to cater to more clinical needs with the same number of paramedical and clinical support. This is also an economic gain in the long term.
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Tell us about the Vios remote monitoring services in India? Its benefits and broader use?
Vios monitoring services is used by large corporate hospitals as well as few mid-size hospitals in India. All the benefits described above have been validated by these hospitals and others hospitals too are showing keen interest in adopting VMS technology.
The salient feature of VMS is one single medical grade platform is applicable across the care continuum thus reduces the challenge of multiple system for patient care in a hospital
Further the remote and IoT based feature makes  the distance of  care receiver and care giver irrelevant since there is a continuous stream of  all physiological vitals  which can be monitored and appropriate care given. Thus ensuring better patient outcomes.
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How is Murata Vios playing a role in bringing healthcare innovations to India and reducing the burden on doctors?
Murata Vios’s product, the Vios Monitoring System, is an innovative, simple to use, FDA-cleared vital signs monitoring system. A critical value add that the Vios Monitoring system brings to the table is that it enables healthcare professionals to take proactive action instead of reactive. The moment a healthcare professional notices a fluctuation in a patient’s vitals they are able to take remedial action without any delay. Few studies suggest that most deaths occur outside the ICU and Vios is aimed at solving this exact problem.
Additionally, since it is a wireless and remote monitoring system, a healthcare provider does not need to visit a patient physically always, this gives healthcare providers more time towards more critical patient-centric activities
Vios also takes the load off documentation from nurses, thereby enabling them to achieve more within their time and reduces any manual oversight. The system is easy to deploy which leverages a hospital’s existing IT infrastructure
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What are the latest trends in medical technology R&D and product development globally?
Health technology is adopting the digital transformation at a rapid pace.   Companies in this space are looking at using AI and ML techniques to make the data analytics and information more relevant to the clinicians for treatment and references in future.  Conventional evidence based treatment is now moving to evidence and data point analysis based treatment
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What are the challenges and opportunities in the Indian medical technology sector? Way forward for the industry?
A few of the challenges in the Indian medical technology sectors include lack of clear medical device regulations, cost of devices and services, lack of reimbursement support, availability of digital infrastructure, and resistance to change or adopt disruptive technologies – technology which can bring efficiency, but require modification of the set processes to accommodate the change.
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At the policy level, how do you view the medical device parks being set up in the various states? Would you like to participate in such initiatives?
PLI schemes and medical devices parks are good initiatives by the governments.  These parks should be designated as SEZs as well these parks should also provide special facilities to med tech start-ups.
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Please share your business outlook and plans for the company in next five years?
Murata Vios plans to expand its foot prints across the country even to the tier II and tier III cities and town. Outreach strategies to various state and central governments to enable digitize and facilitate remote healthcare is in progress.
We also plan to initiate remote monitoring services as a unique service offering to our customers. This concept at present is not accepted well by Indian hospitals but over a period of time we are sure this will also be since it provides numerous benefits across the ecosystem of the hospitals.