Science Center and Alira Health Establish Strategic Partnership to Accelerate MedTech Commercialization

PHILADELPHIA, PA – The University City Science Center, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit with over 60 years of experience advancing the commercialization of promising technologies, and Alira Health, a leading international healthcare and life sciences advisory firm, are joining forces to support Philadelphia-based life sciences and medical technology startups.

Through this partnership, Alira Health will leverage its expertise and deep connections within the healthcare and life sciences industry to support Science Center portfolio companies including members of the [email protected] incubator and the Launch Lane cohort. Alira Health will offer a suite of advisory support, including expertise related to regulatory and clinical affairs, market access, reimbursement, in addition to health economics and outcomes research (HEOR).

“The Science Center’s partnership with Alira Health is a significant value-add for our portfolio companies, enabling them to more efficiently transition their technologies into the marketplace,” says Science Center President & CEO, Tiffany Wilson. “As we push further into the MedTech space, gaining access to Alira Health’s expertise is a win for Philadelphia’s life sciences ecosystem and positions our companies for the best chance of success.”

“Our partnership with the Science Center reinforces our commitment to fostering entrepreneurs in the development of innovative technologies in MedTech,” said David Uffer, Senior Partner and VP of MedTech, Alira Health. “The suite of programs they have developed to further their mission of supporting companies on their path to commercialization is exemplary in the Greater Philadelphia market. We are pleased to offer our practice leaders across our service offerings to advance this effort.”

In addition to individualized pro bono support of Science Center portfolio companies, David Uffer will hold office hours at the June 17th Venture Café Thursday Gathering focused on the MedTech sector. More info here.

The Science Center offers a suite of commercialization programs that are collectively designed to identify, support, and commercialize the most promising technologies. Supporting life sciences, MedTech, and tech-enabled startups, the Science Center helps put teams into place, identify early resources, and connect founders with its vast network of academic and research institutions and industry partners. Over the last ten years, the Science Center has supported over 600 startups and invested $13.4 million with over $1 billion raised in follow-on funds.

About the Science Center
Located in the heart of uCity Square, the Science Center is a mission-driven nonprofit that commercializes promising technology, cultivates talent and convenes people to inspire action. For over 50 years, the Science Center has supported startups, research, and economic development across the emerging technology sectors. As a result, Science Center-supported companies account for one out of every 100 jobs in the Greater Philadelphia region and drive $13 billion in economic activity in the region annually. By providing the right help at the right time, the Science Center is turning bright ideas into businesses and nurturing a workforce to support our 21st century economy. Visit sciencecenter.org to learn more.

About Alira Health
Alira Health is an international advisory firm on the frontlines of healthcare transformation. They provide a suite of integrated services designed to help healthcare and life science companies innovate and grow across their solutions lifecycle.

Alira Health was founded in 1999 and is based in Framingham, MA, U.S. Offices are located in San Francisco, CA, U.S.; Paris, France; Barcelona, Spain; Munich, Germany; Milan, Italy; and Basel and Geneva, Switzerland.

Learn more at https://www.alirahealth.com/.

Enterprise Awards In-Person Celebration

The 2021 Enterprise Awards Celebration – June 29th – In-Person

6:00 PM to 9:00 PM

Join our nominees and VIP guests at this outdoor, tented event on the Tavola Patio at Springfield Country Club from 6:00 to 9:00 pm. Enjoy al fresco cocktails and tasting plates as you reconnect with colleagues and meet our 2021 honorees – plus a special in-person recognition of this year’s Legend Award Honoree for lifetime achievement, Josh Kopelman.

New Dress Code – Smart Casual for a Summer Evening – no ties,
gowns or tuxes!

Read the press release: PACT Announces Hybrid Format for 2021 Enterprise Awards

Watch the Official Finalist Announcement: 28th Annual Enterprise Awards Finalists Announcement

Register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-28th-annual-enterprise-awards-registration-154465349017?aff=web

Proscia® Issued U.S. Patent Covering System and Method of Processing Medical Images for Inspection or Analysis

U.S. Patent No. 10,346,980 addresses techniques critical to the advancement of digital pathology

Proscia, a leading provider of digital pathology software, has been granted U.S. Patent No. 10,346,980 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The patent applies to techniques for processing and analyzing medical images.

For more than 150 years, the standard of care for diagnosing tissue biopsies has been based on a pathologist’s interpretation of patterns using a microscope. This interpretation determines the presence of cancer as well as the aggressiveness of malignancies. Unfortunately, because this human assessment is inherently subjective, it can compromise the accuracy of diagnosis and ultimately, the success of patient outcomes.

Read more.

Legislative Updates for the Medtech Community

Congressional Outlook: The latest Continuing Resolution funding the government is set to expire at the end of the week. The House is expected to take up a new CR early in the week, likely funding the government until March 22. As of now, the expectation is that the Senate will pass the House CR once it is received, although negotiations around budget caps, immigration, tax extenders and other policies continue.  If a deal on caps and other items comes together, the likely scenario for passage of such a deal would be for the Senate to generate the legislation and send it to the House. Even in the case that a broader deal on caps and other items is reached, Congress would still have to pass a separate omnibus spending bill using the new caps numbers to fund the government for the remainder of the fiscal year, and any such omni would be several weeks away. We will keep you posted on any developments.

Device Tax: AdvaMed’s activities this week have focused on limited “thank you” activities for our congressional champions and leadership for the recent two year suspension. We are running a series of digital ads in select states and districts through at least February 8. These ads are running in California, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin. Please refer to Riley’s note from yesterday for further details on the ads and related activities. AdvaMed also continues to explore opportunities for further action on the tax this year, including in connection with tax extenders legislation or the possibility of moving stand-alone legislation. We are also regrouping with our association partners to discuss next steps and explore broadening our base of champions. Another element of our advocacy for this year is framing how we discuss the value of the suspension as an important step, but not equivalent to long-term relief. We’ve spoken with several of you already about your company’s budget cycle, how you will plan for the device tax in the future, and the financial impact of short- versus long-term relief. Please share any examples that you can provide of projects, budgeting, or investments that you are able or unable to pursue given the short-term nature of the device tax relief with Angie Comte ([email protected]). We are happy to collect these examples on an ongoing basis as decisions are made. If you have any questions, please contact Riley at [email protected].

Diagnostics Regulatory Reform: This week, AdvaMed met with staff for Senators Hatch and Bennet staff to discuss their progress on a diagnostics regulatory reform proposal. As with the House, the Senate offices have not yet advanced any proposal as they await FDA comments on the draft proposal from Reps. Buschon and DeGette. Senate staff indicated that this is a priority issue for both offices, and that while they are in the very early stages of meeting with stakeholders, they believe they can advance legislation this year. AdvaMed will stay in close contact with staff as this process evolves. To that end, we will discuss this feedback and other priority items on February 13th during a Dx Washington Representatives strategy meeting. If you have any questions, please contact Duane at [email protected].

Breakthrough Pathway: We continue to anticipate near-term introduction of legislation in the House reflecting the Breakthrough Pathway payment proposal by Reps. Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Jackie Walorski (R-IN), Tony Cardenas (D-CA), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) and Terri Sewell (D-AL).

VA Procurement: Riley held a call of our working group to review current work on legislation to create a new clinical program office for device procurement at the VA, and a Hill letter on continued industry issues with purchase order backlogs. We have finalized both a draft letter on the backlog issue and a concept paper on the program office, and AdvaMed will coordinate with member companies on outreach to our Hill leaders on this issue, starting with Reps. Peters (D-CA) and Banks (R-IN).

Third Party Servicing: The Hill letter to FDA regarding the pending report on third party servicing of medical technologies has been finalized, led by Reps. Costello (R-PA) and Peters (D-CA), with a total of 18 signatories (9 Republicans and 9 Democrats). Please see attached. In addition, AdvaMed will host a briefing for our patient group alliance partners on the topic on Tuesday.

Opioids: The Senate Finance Committee is requesting input from health care industry groups on potential policy changes to Medicare and Medicaid as part of efforts to address the opioid crisis. In their letter, bipartisan committee leadership asks for comments on whether program incentives can be used to promote pain management that minimizes the risk of becoming addicted to opioids. They also ask for recommendations that could expand access to treatment and prevention. AdvaMed’s payment and regulatory work groups continue to try to generate legislative proposals relevant to this issue, but so far we have not seen a robust response. If you have any concepts to share, please follow up with Elizabeth at [email protected]. Also, we have begun planning for a March Hill showcase to demonstrate technologies that are relevant to the opioids crisis. We will follow up with additional details.

Right to Try: In his State of the Union address, the President called for congressional action on right to try legislation. The Senate moved related legislation last year, and included a provision exempting medical devices, as requested by AdvaMed. The House Energy & Commerce Committee is working behind the scenes to prepare their own proposal, which we may see in the coming weeks. We will pursue a similar exemption in the House, and are also in touch with FDA to share our concerns.

SMTA Fly In: The 2018 State MedTech Alliance Fly-In will take place on February 27-28. We expect attendees from state associations from across the country, and will host a welcome reception the evening of February 27.  We will be reaching out directly to several of you to determine your interest in participating alongside your state associations in these visits.


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