A new wireless health monitor from Philips, the IntelliVue MX40, allows doctors and nurses to track patients' health around any hospital.
Royal Philips Electronics has unveiled the IntelliVue MX40, a
wireless health monitor that allows doctors and nurses to track the
of patients at or away from the hospital bed.
The device supports the company's Smart-hopping
protocol, a wireless spectrum reserved for medical telemetry. The
IntelliVue Telemetry System transmits wireless signals of patients'
between a main terminal and mobile monitoring devices.
Worn in a pouch around the neck or attached to a hospital gown, the
MX40 allows patients to be away from their bedside while still being
monitored throughout a medical facility.
In addition to Philips' Smart-hopping network, the MX40 runs on a
2.4GHz wireless frequency and supports some aspects of ZigBee wireless
technology, according to Dale Wiggins, chief technology officer for
and clinical informatics at Philips Healthcare. ZigBee is a low-power
standard run by the nonprofit ZigBee Alliance
Patients might wear the device if they're being monitored following
surgery or during an acute medical episode, Philips reports.
The color monitor on the MX40 allows physicians to view data on
heart activity, blood oxygen levels and blood pressure. It can transmit
to electronic health records (EHRs), and physicians can view the data
mobile devices through a Web portal. The unit, introduced on Aug. 29,
features various alarm settings
and allows doctors to view patient histories and vital trends.
Plus, the monitor can handle cleaning detergents and can reduce hospital-acquired infections, Wiggins told eWEEK. "We eliminated
some of the typical seams and ingresses that allow the infections to actually
get inside the device where it's actually impossible or very difficult to clean," he said.
The unit is resistant to spills and conforms to the IPX7 rating for
submersion in up to 1 meter of water. Patients can even wear the
"It's a very small, very lightweight device that patients don't feel
a burden wearing," Wiggins said. "That's a real
differentiation from previous generations of this technology where they
tended to be very large and rather heavy." The large, heavy models of
the past weren't suitable for older patients, he noted.
Many of the other models in the IntelliVue line are larger desktop-size monitors and lack color displays.
The device allows doctors and nurses to view vital data on the unit
while connected to the patient rather than having to walk away and
check a monitor, Wiggins said.
"Typically a nurse or technician has to go to the patient, put on the leads, the electrodes and then call back to the central
station or telemetry cockpit and see if this looks right, or in some cases
they'd have to walk all the way back to the unit to see if it's right," he
explained. The MX40 allows nurses to see if they're getting the right signals
from equipment without leaving the patient.