Philips, Merck KGaA partner to advance personalised fertility treatment

Philips announced Thursday that it has partnered with Merck KGaA to develop clinical-grade, integrated digital solutions for "highly personalised" fertility treatment. Michelangelo Canzoneri, Merck's global head of digital and data in healthcare, suggested "the future of IVF (in vitro fertilisation) will be unlocked through digital health technologies that empower professionals and patients to be better connected." Financial terms of the multi-year agreement were not disclosed.

Building on maternal, foetal monitoring

Philips noted that the partnership builds on its expertise in maternal and foetal monitoring, its Pregnancy+ and Baby+ consumer engagement apps, ultrasound solutions and HealthSuite Cloud/artificial intelligence (AI) platform.

According to Philips, the collaboration will cover products for advanced informatics, remote patient monitoring, mobile AI-enabled ultrasound diagnostics and cloud-based platform services. "These solutions will aim to better inform patients and clinicians about the choice and timing of fertility treatment to maximise the chances of conception," it added.

Speaking to FirstWord MedTech, a Philips spokesperson explained that "fertility treatment demands a lot of time and energy…Yet IVF physicians are not as connected as they could be to the many important patient developments – like changes in hormone levels, endometrial readiness, and follicle counts – that happen at home." The spokesperson added that "the focus of the partnership is fertility tracking and therapy planning, across both the home and professional healthcare settings. By linking these two settings from a clinical data standpoint, we hope to enable a more personalised experience and desired outcome."  

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