30 December 2020

20 years of innovation at the intersection of critical care, ICT and medical technology

Since 2000, itemedical has been developing medical software solutions. A period in which the company grew and innovated at the intersection of critical care, ICT and medical technology. How is our CEO experiencing this anniversary? Peter Hof rarely steps into the limelight, but on the occasion of two decades of itemedical, he is happy to talk to us. Together we look back at the past, look at the present and explore the future.

The past: from high-tech multinational to people-oriented niche expert

What was your professional career like before you joined itemedical?

“I gained international experience at a large multinational company. While living in Japan and the United States, I learned how to deal with different cultures and nationalities. This experience now comes in handy on a daily basis during contacts with suppliers from Israel, England and America. But just as much when dealing with technicians, specialists, nurses, managers and administrators.”

What role does your experience in previous positions play in your current work?

“At Philips and NXP Semiconductors (a semiconductor manufacturer), I developed my knowledge in technology, project management and quality. My vision of leadership crystallized around an important insight: cooperation between team and customers is the key to success. At the time, I worked with a multidisciplinary team whose responsibilities were spread across several countries. That’s how you learn to deal with different visions and interests. I can build on that experience today within the critical care environment, itemedical’s field of activity.”

The career switch followed in 2010. How did you come to take over itemedical?

“I was looking for a small-scale, innovative and people-oriented company. At itemedical, I was immediately struck by the exceptional combination of technical and clinical knowledge. At the same time, the niche position itemedical occupies in critical care intrigued me. As a company, you contribute to better care, you have influence that matters: because our solutions help improve care, you ultimately improve people’s health.”

The present: thoughts on the 20th anniversary

What does it mean for itemedical to celebrate a 20th anniversary?

“Our society is changing rapidly. And this is especially true in the medical sector. The itemedical team has been growing with this continuous change for 20 years. By constantly innovating and listening to our customers, we respond to new needs. In recent years, for example, we worked hard on medical alarm solutions.”

“Our 20th anniversary falls in the year when the corona virus has a huge impact on the world and also our company. Under great pressure, IC departments were scaled up. In close cooperation with our customers and in our team, we were able to contribute to this. This special achievement strengthened our togetherness and team spirit. The cooperation with our clients makes itemedical special. Clients know that we are accessible, honest and reliable, that they can rely on us. These are core values that are very important to me. Everyone who has been active within itemedical over the past 20 years has contributed to building this corporate culture. From the entrepreneurial founders to the current team, I am proud of who we are and what we do.”

What is the secret of itemedical?

“You could refer to the broad portfolio, with solutions such as the MediScore ICU, MediScore MDDG, Metavision (iMDsoft’s PDMS) and the patient monitoring and cardiology solutions from Spacelabs Healthcare. But the most important explanation is the entrepreneurial spirit and the knowledge and experience – part clinical, part technical – of our people. Thanks to that background, we come up with transparent answers to our users’ specific questions. Amid a proliferation of start-ups, the industry needs reliable, certified solutions.”

The future: itemedical’s growth path in 5 steps

Where do growth opportunities lie for itemedical?

“To grow, the foundation of our company must be solid. In 2010, we were pioneers on ISO13485, and we are continuing along that line. In early 2021, we will be MDR-compliant (the new Medical Devices Regulation, the successor to the MDD). We also expect to obtain our ISO27001 certification in 2021.”

“From that foundation, we continue to grow. On the one hand, we are investing in deepening our domains – from medical alarms to clinical research. On the other hand, we are thinking about a broader application of our alarm solution MediScore MDDG. That technology today helps create a safer and quieter intensive care unit. This solution is equally applicable hospital-wide.”

“In addition, we are intensifying our advice to customers on alarm coaching. You can set up our alarm solution specifically and customized. Under the heading of ‘alarm consulting,’ we go looking for those specific requirements with the customer. We don’t just deliver software solutions, we think along and thus share our clinical and technical knowledge with the healthcare sector. Conversely, we -in turn- learn a lot from our customers. That interaction completes the circle.”

To what extent is itemedical responding to trends within the healthcare sector?

“Hospital care is shifting more and more to home care. The alarm solution that we are deploying today in critical care within hospitals can be extended to the home situation in the future. That technological support will be crucial to making home care successful.”

“A second trend is the focus on big data within hospitals. How do you create data platforms for scientific research? And how do you deploy ‘artificial intelligence’ to improve diagnostics and treatments? Our people know how to unlock data from hospital systems anonymously and encrypted. That’s why we see a role for itemedical in contributing to medical scientific research.”

“In short, there is a breeding ground for further growth and development. Over the next 20 years, itemedical will also remain an innovative company: a place where healthcare providers find a discussion partner to come up with creative, innovative and technological solutions together.”