St Jude Medical said that the new Wireless USB Adaptor enables patients using a Merlin@home transmitter to transmit data to their physician over cellular networks, allowing for more convenient care than existing landline services provide.

The Wireless USB Adaptor is a small device that plugs into new and existing Merlin@home transmitters. The transmitter typically sits on a patient’s bedside table and wirelessly communicates with the patient’s device while they are asleep.

The data are sent via the Merlin@home transmitter to the Patient Care Network (PCN), an Internet-based repository of patient and device data. Once transmitted, the PCN organises the data for fast analysis and easy review, and allows information to be sent directly to a clinic’s or hospital’s electronic health record (EHR) system for inclusion in the patient’s comprehensive EHR.

The remote monitoring capabilities facilitated by the Merlin@home transmitter permit automated follow-up appointments and daily device checks to occur wirelessly, with limited patient action required. This reduces unnecessary visits to the physician’s office, while allowing physicians to more quickly become aware of changes with the patient’s condition or device.

The transmitter supports all radio-frequency (RF) St. Jude Medical implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs), cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillators (CRT-Ds), and the Accent RF pacemaker and Anthem RF CRT-P (cardiac resynchronization therapy pacemaker). The Accent RF pacemaker and Anthem CRT-P are the first and only pacemakers that provide complete remote and in-clinic follow-ups via wireless communication.

The data transferred using the Merlin@home device are fully encrypted and meet or exceed all applicable national data privacy and security requirements in every country where the PCN is used. In addition, BSI Management Systems, an international standards testing, registration and certification organization, has awarded St Jude Medical the information security certification ISO/IEC 27001:2005.

Eric Fain, president of the cardiac rhythm management division at St Jude Medical, said: “This technology improves patient care by providing an efficient remote monitoring system when the use of a landline is inconvenient or unavailable. The Wireless USB Adaptor is another addition to our innovative product portfolio and demonstrates the strength of our connectivity platform.”