Airstrip purchase of Palomar EMR kicks off all-in-one mobile platform push

In a bid to create a "mobile-EMR enhancer," mobile cardiac and obstetric monitoring company Airstrip Technologies just bought San Diego-based Palomar Health's self-developed electronic medical record system.

It's the first move in Airstrip's new bid to create a single, mobile platform that combines EMR access, remote patient monitoring, imaging and other functionality, Alan Portela, CEO of Airstrip, told FierceMobileHealthcare.

While the move may seem a bit unusual to some, Palomar Chief Innovation Officer Orlando Portale said it actually was a pretty intuitive choice by both parties.

"When we started developing the design of this EMR product in late 2010, we always ... had a place-holder in the system for real-time vital sign monitoring," Portale told FierceMobileHealthcare. "So it should be pretty easy to connect up these two products," into a single platform, he added.

Palomar sold the rights to the system, though, and while it will be a development partner on a few fronts, Airstrip now has the authority to develop, change, add to, and otherwise enhance the EMR product, Portale noted. Interestingly, Airstrip picked up the technology before the hospital was able to complete its planned July rollout of the system.

The rest of this year will be spent integrating the Airstrip fetal and cardiac monitoring functions with the Palomar EMR, but after that the company wants to open the platform to other EMR systems, and become more system-agnostic, Portela explained. It's the genesis of the title "mobile-EMR enhancer," as Airstrip doesn't want to create a proprietary EMR system alone, but also a mobile platform that can connect to EMRs of all stripes.

The system already is set up to integrate with the Department of Veterans' Affairs' VistA system, as well as Cerner's Millennium software, according to Portela, with plans to reach out to more vendors later this year.

The next clinical goal for the system, he added, is to develop a fully functional mobile computerized physician order entry module. Currently, the Palomar EMR system has limited meds ordering functionality.  

To learn more:
- read the Airstrip announcement (.pdf)