- The US Economic Development Administration (EDA) has awarded a three-year, $750,000 grant to Northeast Indiana Innovation Center (NIIC) to launch a healthcare Internet of Things lab in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Work on the lab, called the Indiana Connected Health IoT Lab/Network, is scheduled to begin in January. The grant was awarded under the EDA’s 2018 Regional Innovation Strategies Program.
“Individuals and groups with innovative IoT ideas will have the resources, tools, and networks to develop ideas into new products, new or expanded businesses, and new markets. This investment will help engage healthcare companies, IoT supplier companies, and applied-research universities and lead Indiana Economic Development organizations reaching global markets,” said EDA, a bureau of the US Department of Commerce, in announcing the grant.
Local partners of the lab include Indiana Economic Development Corporation, Clear Object, Indiana Tech, Purdue University Fort Wayne, Parkview Mirro Center for Research and Innovation, Elevate Ventures Northeast Indiana, Indiana University Research and Technology Corporation, Vision Tech Partners Northeast Indiana, Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership, and Greater Fort Wayne Inc.
Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership CEO and President John Sampson said that the Indiana Connected Health IoT Lab/Network will be a “tremendous opportunity for Northeast Indiana. This EDA grant award showcases strong, forward momentum of Northeast Indiana, the importance of a focus on technology in all industries and the incredible collaboration that takes place in this region.”
NIIC President and CEO Karl LaPan told Inside Indiana Business that the lab will carry out pilot projects and experiment with innovative ideas in the healthcare industry.
The lab will be “focused on how to use technology to improve patient care, how to get greater engagement with patients and the care that they need in order to be successful with their health, and to work with companies and entrepreneurs and business builders and idea people to bring some of those game changing ways of engaging patients to the marketplace,” LaPan said.
LaPan said that northeast Indiana has a cluster of related industries, including advanced manufacturing, medical devices, and communications and electronics, that the lab can draw on. “So I think bringing those various disciplines and industries together, we can create game changing technology to help improve and hopefully bend the cost curve in healthcare,” he noted.