Dell teams up with Zebra Medical Vision for data analytics initiative

Zebra Medical Vision CEO Elad Benjamin

Leveraging Big Data platforms is becoming increasingly important in the med tech realm, as companies know well. Technology giant Dell is wise to the trend and recently inked a deal with Israel's Zebra Medical Vision to get its hands on the company's data analytics platforms to flesh out its diagnostics and wellness services.

Under the terms of the multiyear deal, Dell will use Kibutz Shefayim, Israel-based Zebra's analytics tools to give clinical sites access to algorithms that offer screening and diagnostic decision support, allowing healthcare providers to identify individuals who are at risk for developing certain conditions such as cardiac or liver disease and determine which patients are eligible for certain preventative care and wellness programs, the companies said in a statement. The partnership will most likely benefit integrated care providers, HMOs and other organizations that are "seeking to manage risk or build preventative care programs" to streamline operations and cut down on costs, the companies said in a statement.

Over time, Zebra Medical plans on rolling out "as many clinical and diagnostic algorithms" as possible to cover diseases and pathologies that healthcare institutions encounter on a day-to-day basis, Zebra Medical Vision CEO Elad Benjamin told FierceMedicalDevices. The company is launching an algorithm that identifies a patient's bone mineral density from a CT scan, but also has a "long list" of algorithms in the pipeline, including those for diabetes, pulmonary hypertension, and risk of cardiovascular disease or stroke, Benjamin said.

"From our perspective, the deal is great way to reach a large segment of the healthcare market and have our analytics platform really influence a large amount of imaging centers and hospitals and healthcare institutions. For Dell, the deal is a great way to provide an added-value service on top of something they already do," Benjamin said.

Zebra's tools also hold promise for researchers who are looking for easier access to clinical data. Scientists can use Dell's clinical archive to create a large scale medical platform, which will then feed into Zebra's analytics system to provide additional insights for researchers.

Dell is far from the only tech company jumping on the Big Data diagnostics bandwagon. Tech titan IBM ($IBM) is also getting in on the action, recently teaming up with Boston Children's Hospital to use its Watson system for rare pediatric disease diagnosis and treatment.

Meanwhile, healthcare IT companies are charging ahead with the development of platforms that offer clinical insights to med tech and biopharma companies. Earlier this week, Molecular Health roped in €25 million ($26.6 million) in financing to spur commercialization for its healthcare informatics platform, which helps doctors, diagnostic labs and drugmakers process complex data for patient treatment and drug development.

- read the statement