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SmartTRAK Life Sciences News and Analysis Blog

7 min read

SmartTRAK COVID-19 Updates: Early Effects on the MedTech Industry

3/19/20 2:00 PM

Covid-19 V9

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop rapidly, the MedTech industry is already seeing many changes and disruptions. SmartTRAK has collected updates and news from the last few days concerning the spread of COVID-19 and how it is affecting the Life Sciences Industry.


  • Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders (AWCS) held an emergency call to discuss hospital wound care clinics being considered non-essential and being asked to close due to COVID-19. Participants included wound clinics, providers and manufactures.
  • Medical Directors from Healogics and Restorix, and other wound clinics requested the AWCS publish a one page fact sheet asap stating the importance of wound clinics staying open for challenging pts, as w/o care, the probability of needing emergency care increases significantly.

ACS Issues Decision-Making Guidance on Elective Procedures
With calls to curtail elective surgery, the ACS published guidance on the mgmt of non-emergent operations and suggests surgeons use SLU’s Elective Surgery Acuity Scale to help decide whether procedures should be postponed, performed at an ASC or not postponed.

Tracking COVID-19 via Smart Phones
The US Government is talking w/ tech companies (Facebook, Google, etc) and health experts re how they can use data gleaned from Americans’ phones to map the spread of COVID-19 to predict the next hotspot or decide where to allocate resources. Seattle Times

Israel's COVID-19 Phone Tracking Sparks Debate
Recent news about Israel’s plans to use location data to help track COVID-19 has sparked intense discussions about legal/ethical implications and invasion of privacy. Bloomberg

COVID-19 Guidance for the Wound Patient
An article has been published “Avoiding Unintended Consequences in the Fight Against COVID-19 for the Complex Wound Patient” providing guidance on how to deal with and treat the complex wound patient.

Amplitude Surgical announced it will be substantially reducing activity over the coming weeks in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, noting the Company’s financial performance in the first half of its fiscal yr will help it cope with the situation.

COVID-19 Update: FDA Issues Guidance for Clinical Trials 
FDA announced it has issued guidance on the conduction of clinical trials during the COVID-19 pandemic. FDA outlines considerations to assist sponsors in assuring the safety of trial participants and maintenance of good clinical practice while minimizing risks to trial integrity.

Amazon Prioritizing Medical Supplies & High Demand Products
In response to the COVID-19 situation, Amazon is temporarily prioritizing medical supplies, household staples and high demand products coming into their fulfillment centers to be able to respond more quickly to customer needs. Business Insider

S2Medical AB 
S2 Medical is taking advantage of the COVID-19 situation, and have announced several distribution orders for medical equipment used to prevent the spread of COVID-19, w/o specifying customer or products further. Orders total $1.9MM, 10 times their FY19 revenue of $0.2MM.

COVID-19 European Update
  • SmartTRAK’s Switzerland-based analyst reports COVID-19 cases there are expected to peak in ~14 weeks, and that the country is in “shutdown” w/ all non-essential travel and business being banned.
  • SmartTRAK analysts in Europe have heard that sales of trauma products are down due to social isolation restrictions and sporting events being canceled which are reducing the number of injuries.
  • SmartTRAK analysts in Europe have heard that the ortho supply chain is a problem as most manufacturing facilities are in the more heavily affected areas and w/ borders being closed. Swiss manufacturers are thinking Oct will be the best-case scenario for getting back to normal.

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Cannacord Genuity Notes Q2 to See Biggest Effect from COVID-19
Based on conversations w/ industry stakeholders, Canaccord Genuity notes elective procedures are becoming deferrable by pts & providers, that the biggest hit to procedure vol will be in Q2 & that timing of recouping of procedures will depend on when COVID-19 situation stabilizes.

Virtual Treatment Options Important in Face of COVID-19
Startups offering virtual treatments are becoming particularly important as social distancing measures become the new normal for the near future. Lyra Health, a company offering virtual mental health treatment and in-person sessions, landed Starbucks as a client. PitchBook

Lattice Biologics Begins COVID-19 Trial
Lattice Biologics has begun enrolling pts in its Phase I clinical trial to address the safety and efficacy of AmnioBoost for the tx of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) related to COVID-19 infection.

US Resources Available for COVID-19

  • The Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) has updated its statistics on critical care resources available in the US in “United States Resource Availability for COVID-19,” including estimated total no. of ICU and step-down beds, mechanical ventilators and staffing. sccm.org
  • The Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) has updated its statistics on critical care resources available in the US in “United States Resource Availability for COVID-19,” including estimated total no. of ICU and step-down beds, mechanical ventilators and staffing. sccm.org
  • Citing the American Hospital Association (AHA), the SCCM estimates that for COVID-19, 4.8MM pts would be hospitalized, 1.9MM would be admitted to the ICU and 960,000 would require ventilatory support. sccm.org
  • Based on 2018 AHA data, the SCCM estimates there are 5,256 AHA-registered community hospitals in the US. Of these, 2,704 (51.4%) deliver ICU services. They have 534,964 acute care beds, including 96,596 ICU beds. sccm.org
  • Reports from ICUs worldwide suggest that the most common reason for COVID-19 patient admission to the ICU is severe hypoxic respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation. sccm.org
  • The SCCM estimates the shortage of ICU MDs, advanced practice providers, respiratory therapists, and RNs trained in mechanical ventilation would limit the maximum number of ventilated pts to ~135,000, well w/in the supply of currently available equipment. sccm.org

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Thomas Wallick
Written by Thomas Wallick

30+ years’ experience in Consumer and Life Sciences Industry marketing including Orthopedics and Cardiology.

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