SpineMark, Wooridul Healthcare of Korea Partner to Advance Spine Health, Research and Education

SAN DIEGO, June 5 /PRNewswire/ -- SpineMark Corporation, a spine care services organization that partners with hospitals and physicians to develop spine centers and facilitate clinical research, and Wooridul Hospital of Korea have established an international alliance that will leverage and build upon the spine excellence of each organization. Through this joint venture, SpineMark and Wooridul will create centers designed to advance the development of programs for clinical care, research and medical education to achieve more effective care worldwide for patients who have suffered back injuries.

As part of the alliance, SpineMark and Wooridul will open spine Centers of Excellence, clinical and spine research organizations and medical education facilities.

"Wooridul Hospital is renowned for its state of the art facilities and work in spine treatment research," said Marcy T. Rogers, M.Ed., president and CEO of SpineMark. "This collaboration is a natural extension of our work and commitment to advancing spine treatment options to patients on a global level. Both SpineMark and Wooridul share a fundamental belief that all patients -- no matter where they live in the world -- should have access to spine care that will improve their quality of life and help them get back on their feet as quickly as possible."

By working together, Wooridul and SpineMark aim to co-establish and manage a clinical research organization with spinal research organizations (SROs) in Korea, Shanghai, Singapore, Japan, India and Abu Dhabi. Additionally, the organizations plan to develop a state-of-the-art medical education center with training facility in Singapore, similar to the SpineMark Medical Conference Center at Texas Back Institute in Plano, Texas. This center will serve to train physicians on the latest clinical advancements in spine care.

Under the agreement, medical device companies will be able to contract with SpineMark and Wooridul to gain access to their network of research sites. Once the SpineMark International Medical Advisory Board, chaired by Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli, has approved a prospective study, the SRO will begin enrolling patients under SpineMark's CRO Management (SCROM), a wholly owned subsidiary of SpineMark and the nation's only clinical research organization dedicated to spine. With this design, SpineMark and Wooridul will be able to provide intermediary third-party oversight to clinical trials being conducted in the network to ensure quality monitoring, surveillance and resources are brought to bear for participating patients.

"As healthcare globalization continues and patients become savvier about what is available to them worldwide, we are focused on providing the best treatments available at facilities that are subject to, and comply with, the most stringent regulatory guidelines in the world," said Dr. Sang-Ho Lee, chairman of the Board of Wooridul Hospital. "By partnering with SpineMark, we are building an international bridge for education, facility development and clinical research that brings together the most advanced physicians and business practices from around the world."

Established in 1982, Wooridul Hospital has more than 25 years of experience in providing systematic spine management as a total care system covering spine disease prevention, diagnosis, testing, treatment and rehabilitation. Its 108 spinal surgeons treat patients in its various hospitals located in Seoul, Busan, Gimpo Airport and Daegu.

The agreement will also benefit Wooridul's state-of-the-art medical destination facilities, which are designed to provide top quality healthcare in a resort setting to patients from all over the world.

"Our goal is to create global medical destination centers that provide advanced treatment options to people who suffer from spinal disorders and diseases," said Dr. Jihoon Jeong, director of research and international business at Wooridul Hospital. "Ongoing research and education activities are at the heart of this goal. SpineMark's model of offering physicians and device companies the oversight and support needed to conduct clinical trials under one umbrella will allow us to further our R&D efforts on a global level."

About SpineMark

SpineMark Corporation is an innovative service organization dedicated to transforming the delivery of spine care. The company partners with hospitals and physicians across the United States and abroad to develop and operate comprehensive, evidence-based spine centers of excellence. By building a global network of spine centers, spine research organizations and state-of-the-art medical conference facilities, SpineMark is improving the overall quality of life of patients afflicted with spine disorders and injuries.

Driven by the specialized experience and expertise of its leadership team and medical advisory board, SpineMark's goal is to create a global network, based on clinically validated best practices for spine care that streamline diagnosis and treatment, simplify referrals and accelerate the recovery process.

SOURCE SpineMark Corporation