Inaugural annual forum brings together leading physicians, executives and payer policy makers

Gary Ulicny (CEO Shepherd Center), Carl Josehart (CEO TIRR) and Kent Riddle (CEO Mary Free Bed) - from left to right - discuss the value of innovative rehabilitation technology from an administrator perspective.The human motion business unit of Parker Hannifin Corporation, the global leader in motion and control technologies, last week hosted the pre-eminent experts in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation in a unique forum to discuss one of the most pressing questions facing the industry - how to demonstrate the value of recent and emerging neurorehabilitation technologies in various clinical and personal settings.

This was the first of annual Parker Human Motion Summits, each to be focused around a specific issue in the industry. In three separate panels, leading physicians, and hospital and health insurance executives reflected on important aspects regarding the evidence required for the integration of advanced technology in inpatient rehabilitation facilities, outpatient clinics and even in the patient’s home.

Tim Sheflin (Executive Director, Boston Healthcare Associates),  Bret Bostock (National Orthotics Specialist, Hanger Clinic), Dr. Marc Richmond (Regional Medical Director, Blue Shield California) and Dr. Michael Choo (Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President, Paradigm) discuss the use of advanced technology in a home setting.“We feel it is critical to foster discussions among physicians, administrators and payer policy makers to understand the various perspectives regarding clinical evidence, health economics, and the value of advanced technology”, said Achilleas Dorotheou, VP and Head of Human Motion at Parker Hannifin Corporation. “We want to be an agent for advancing the field of human motion technology forward and we are very pleased with the discussions at this summit and we want to continue to offer a forum for these important stakeholders.”

A panel format allowed the audience to participate in candid Q&A sessions with experts. The consensus among the attendees was that recent and emerging innovations have the potential to offer significant value, however there is still work to be done to quantify and demonstrate the value delivered. As a result of these insights, many of the participants have begun to explore collaborative pilots and initiatives to further examine these areas. Participants noted that continued engagement of stakeholders at events like the Parker Human Motion Summit will play an important role in driving a clear path forward.

Achilleas Dorotheou (Head and VP Human Motion, Parker Hannifin) thanks Ryan Reddick (SCI patient, T7 complete) for demonstrating Indego.“I believe this summit provided critical insights about the acquisition decision and use of advanced technology in various clinical settings. It became apparent how important it is to review and demonstrate the value of innovative rehabilitation technologies from various perspectives”, said Dr. Gary Ulicny, CEO of Shepherd Center in Atlanta, GA.

Parker is currently developing Indego® - a powered lower limb orthosis, also known as exoskeleton, and is targeting commercial launch in Europe in summer 2015 and in the United States towards in the latter half of 2015.

Dorotheou concluded. “We highly value the exchange with experts in the rehabilitation field, which is reflected not only in hosting this summit but also in our participation in the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation’s Industry Relations Council (IRC).The IRC provides a useful framework for the Academy and industry to expand dialogue on emerging, non-promotional, issues of common interest.”