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The Global COVID-19 Pandemic Continues Presenting New Opportunities for Open Source Innovations

Open Source and the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) — the collection of medical devices and applications that connect to healthcare Information Technology (IT) systems through online computer networks and the cloud — are a game changer for the healthcare industry.

Both are driving down costs and helping improve both patient care and comfort by capturing and communicating real-time data that allows healthcare providers to identify, treat, monitor and ultimately, manage patients’ health.

In addition, Open Source is providing the technology necessary to develop remote patient monitoring through smart devices with intelligent capabilities to track and diagnose the well-being of individuals in their daily lives. The connected infrastructure of Wi-Fi-enabled consumer medical devices — along with Artificial Intelligence (AI) — are allowing such new discoveries as wearable devices, biological sensors, medical equipment that automatically reports data to analytic dashboards, hospital beds rigged with sensors to measure patients’ vital signs and machine-machine communication technologies to emerge.

When it comes to COVID-19, many Open Source developers and companies relying on both Open Source Software (OSS) and Open Source Hardware (OSH) are involved with the fight.

Some have used Python — a popular Open Source programming language — to create apps which allow people to visualize the spread of the virus and let professionals perform contact tracing. Around the world, companies are manufacturing and distributing robots — many developed using Open Source technologies, the cloud and IoMT — to help healthcare workers care for patients by providing food and medicines. Others are disinfecting hospitals and airport surfaces.

Many OIN community members rely on Open Source technologies to not only advance the medical industry but improve healthcare — whether it’s through new product innovations, delivery solutions or health-related services. Here’s a snapshot of how a few of our community members are making a positive difference.

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Here are a few highlights about our community members:

Metall Zug | OIN Community Member

Switzerland-based Metall Zug created a spin-off company, V-ZUG to focus on infection control and medical technology.

Medtronic | OIN Community Member

Medtronic — an American-Irish medical device company — publicly shared its design specifications of its Puritan Bennett™ 560 ventilator during COVID-19 to speed up ventilator manufacturing. Among other areas, the company uses OSS in its patient monitoring software.

MicroPort | OIN Community Member

MicroPort is a global medical device developer and manufacturer headquartered in China — entered a joint venture in 2021 with NDR Medical Technology — a Developer of Automated Needle Targeting Robotics System — to benefit Chinese patients in need of lung biopsies.

Mindray | OIN Community Member

To assist first responders, Mindray — a Chinese-based designer and producer of medical equipment and accessories for human and veterinary use — increased production of its patient monitors and Point-of-Care Testing (POCT) ultrasound devices.

Philips | OIN Community Member

Philips — a Dutch multinational conglomerate — not only ramped up its ventilator production to support COVID-19 patients worldwide but is constantly improving healthcare across such areas as patient monitoring and diagnosis, radiation, ventilation, respiratory, neurology and oncology, among others.

WSO2 | OIN Community Member

Based in the United States, WSO2 built its Open Healthcare solution on top of its industry- leading, Open Source integration platform that streamlines compliance with U.S. regulations for providers to give patients access to their healthcare information.

OIN Community Members

Open Source Advocates | Medical Devices, Biotech & Life Sciences

Horiba | OIN Community Member
WSO2 | OIN Community Member
Illumina | OIN Community Member
Olympus | OIN Community Member
Hartmann | OIN Community Member
23andMe | OIN Community Member
Sunrise Medical | OIN Community Member
Straumann Group | OIN Community Member
Mindray | OIN Community Member
MicroPort | OIN Community Member
Metall Zug | OIN Community Member
Medtronic | OIN Community Member

What Members are Saying

Philips is proud to be a founder of the Open Invention Network. Over the years, OSS has been an important building block for many of our businesses and is increasingly important for the medical and health tech industries. OSS enables faster development of monitoring, imaging, diagnostic, and informatic platforms, while driving down costs. With more than 3,900 community members, OIN is ensuring that OSS innovation continues its rapid pace, in a safe environment enabled by licensing.  
Jako EleveldHead of IP LicensingRoyal Philips