A Medical Device Daily

Hill-Rom (Batesville, Indiana), the healthcare operating company of Hillenbrand Industries, and the Medical Division of Tempur-Pedic North America (Lexington, Kentucky), a subsidiary of Tempur-Pedic International, reported that they will offer a new line of bed surfaces for acute care institutions in North America. The new line was showcased for the first time during the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE; Washington, DC) Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, ended yesterday.

Peter Soderberg, CEO of Hillenbrand and Hill-Rom, said "Together, we can make a difference in the way patients rest and heal by providing a line of sleep surfaces that focuses on comfort while simultaneously providing better pressure redistribution for hospitalized patients."

The companies said they will debut a jointly branded line of premium, non-powered medical mattresses to the Hill-Rom acute care base. Hill-Rom would be named as exclusive third-party distributor in North America of Tempur-Pedic medical mattresses to this acute care arena. The co-branded Hill- Rom Tempur-Pedic line will feature sleeping surfaces made specifically for Hill-Rom's products such as the VersaCare, TotalCare and Affinity 4 beds, as well as CareAssist, stretchers and mattress replacement systems.

Flagship Global Health (New York) reported the launch of what it bills as "the world's first virtual center of excellence for specialist care to give consumers direct access to a global network of leading specialists at the speed-of-need."

Flagship's virtual center embraces all medical specialties and uses a team approach for educating patients and linking them with the best doctors to diagnose and treat them. Flagship's network provides access to physicians throughout the world regardless of location and affiliation. Consumers and businesses can gain access to this network, through an annual membership plan called Specialist Care Direct.

Fred Nazem, CEO/founder of Flagship Global Health said "In the current referral system, people are bounced from doctor to doctor and if they're lucky, they end up seeing a specialist that could put them on the road to recovery. Flagship created a fast-track system that is able to triage patients virtually and then directly connect them to the renowned physicians in its virtual center of excellence, assuring the best possible outcome."

Flagship said it has been qualifying and contracting with physician specialists in 30 medical and surgical disciplines and more than 150 sub-specialties.

The network includes physician specialists affiliated with the nation's top medical institutions such as New York Presbyterian (New York), Brigham & Women's (Boston), Johns Hopkins (Baltimore), Mt. Sinai (New York), Virginia Mason (Seattle), Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (Los Angeles), and UCLA Medical Center (Los Angeles), includes physician specialists throughout Europe, the Middle East, Caribbean and China and currently serves other Asian countries from its Beijing office.

The company has also created a platform that matches patients with specialists and supports communications between doctors and members as well as between the specialist teams working on the member's case. In addition, Flagship members receive an online, personal health record that allows doctors and patients to share patients' medical history and information, prior to and following appointments.

An annual membership allows members to see as many specialists as needed to provide comprehensive diagnosis, clear answers and effective treatment, Flagship said.

Flagship Global Health is an international health assurance organization that provides health management and emergency support resources typically not available through conventional medical insurance.