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Prestigious annual pediatric medical device competition reveals five finalists

Pediatric innovators gain access to pediatric accelerator and will compete in October 22 final showcase June 03, 2022

Five finalists have been named in the prestigious annual “Make Your Medical Device Pitch for Kids!” competition presented by the National Capital Consortium for Pediatric Device Innovation (NCC-PDI). Representing innovations in pediatric technologies that aim to address unmet medical needs for children, these five finalists now have access to a pediatric accelerator program led by MedTech Innovator and will compete for a share of $150,000 in grant funding from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the final virtual pitch event in October 2022. The pediatric pitch event is part of the 10th Annual Symposium on Pediatric Device Innovation, co-located with the MedTech Conference, powered by AdvaMed.

"Addressing unmet needs across pediatric populations is critical to advancing children’s health and we are delighted to once again work with pioneering companies that seek to bridge this care gap,” says Kolaleh Eskandanian, Ph.D., M.B.A, P.M.P., vice president and chief innovation officer at Children’s National Hospital and principal investigator of NCC-PDI. "As an FDA-funded consortium, NCC-PDI serves as a critical device development resource, bringing together individuals and institutions that support viable pediatric innovations and create faster pathways to commercialization. We congratulate this year’s finalists and look forward to seeing the progress made in the coming months as they navigate the accelerator program.”

The following are the five pediatric device innovations that judges selected for the final competition:

  • CorInnova – Houston, TX - Minimally invasive biventricular non-blood contacting cardiac assist device to treat heart failure.
  • Innovation Lab – La Palma, CA - Mechanical elbow brace stabilizes tremors for pediatric ataxic cerebral palsy to improve the performance of Activities of Daily Living (ADLs).
  • Prapela – Biddeford, ME - Prapela's incubator pad is the first innovation to improve the treatment of apnea of prematurity in over 20 years.
  • Tympanogen – Richmond, VA - Perf-Fix replaces surgical eardrum repair with a nonsurgical clinic procedure
  • Xpan – Concord, Ont. - Xpan’s universal trocar enables safest and most dynamic access and effortless upsizing in conventional/mini/robotic procedures.

Beginning in June 2022, the five finalists will participate in a pediatric-focused track of the MedTech Innovator accelerator, the world’s largest accelerator of medical devices.

“We know all too well that there continues to be an immense need for more medical devices created specifically for children. MedTech Innovator is committed to improving the lives of patients by accelerating the growth of innovative health care solutions,” says Paul Grand, CEO of MedTech Innovator. “We are grateful to have the opportunity to work with this year’s cohort of emerging technologies and look forward to providing them with the individualized mentorship they need to help them take the next strategic steps towards product commercialization.”

NCC-PDI is one of five consortia in the FDA’s Pediatric Device Consortia Grant Program created to support the development and commercialization of medical devices for children, which lags significantly behind the progress of adult medical devices. NCC-PDI is led by the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation at Children’s National and the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland, with support from partners MedTech Innovator,  BioHealth Innovation and design firm Archimedic.

“We are delighted to see these five finalists take the next steps in their device development and commercialization journey,” says William E. Bentley, Ph.D., Robert E. Fischell distinguished professor and director of the Robert E. Fischell Institute for Biomedical Devices at the University of Maryland. “For too long, children have been left behind in the innovation space with tools that do not properly address their dynamic growth and development. We applaud the efforts of these innovators and look forward to their final pitches this fall.”

To date, NCC-PDI has mentored nearly 200 medical device sponsors to help advance their pediatric innovations, with 16 devices having received either their FDA market clearance or CE marking.

The accelerator program is the consortium’s latest addition to a network of resources and experts that it provides in support of pediatric innovators. 

Eskandanian adds that supporting the progress of pediatric innovators is a key focus of the new Children’s National Research & Innovation Campus, a one-of-its-kind ecosystem that drives discoveries that save and improve the lives of children. On a nearly 12-acre portion of the former, historic Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Northwest Washington, D.C., Children’s National has combined its strengths with those of public and private partners, including industry, universities, federal agencies, start-up companies and academic medical centers. The campus provides a rich environment of public and private partners which, like the NCC-PDI network, will help bolster pediatric innovation and commercialization.

Media Contact:  Samantha Desmond | 713-524-8170 | (973) 903-8300 or Cherri Carbonara | 713-524-8170 | (832) 473-6380


About the University of Maryland

The University of Maryland, College Park is the state's flagship university and one of the nation's preeminent public research universities. A global leader in research, entrepreneurship and innovation, the university is home to more than 40,000 students, 10,000 faculty and staff, and 300 academic programs. As one of the nation's top producers of Fulbright scholars, its faculty includes two Nobel laureates, six Pulitzer Prize winners and 58 members of the national academies. The institution has a $2.3 billion operating budget and secures more than $1.3 billion annually in research funding together with the University of Maryland, Baltimore. For more information about the University of Maryland, College Park, visit www.umd.edu.


About MedTech Innovator

Based in Los Angeles, Calif., MedTech Innovator is the largest accelerator of medical device companies in the world and the premier nonprofit startup accelerator in the medical technology industry. Its mission is to improve the lives of patients by accelerating the growth of companies that are transforming the health care system. MedTech Innovator matches health care industry leaders with innovative early-stage and emerging-growth medtech companies for mentorship and support. For more information about MedTech Innovator, visit https://medtechinnovator.org/ and follow @MedTechAwards on Twitter and on LinkedIn. To receive industry insights and highlights about MedTech Innovator’s current and alumni participant companies, subscribe to its monthly newsletter.


About Children’s National Hospital

Children’s National Hospital, based in Washington, D.C., was established in 1870 to help every child grow up stronger. Today, it is among the nation’s top 10 children’s hospitals. It is ranked No. 1 for newborn care for the fifth straight year and ranked in all specialties evaluated by U.S. News & World Report. Children’s National is transforming pediatric medicine for all children. The Children’s National Research & Innovation Campus opened in 2021, a first-of-its-kind pediatric hub dedicated to developing new and better ways to care for kids. Children’s National has been designated three times in a row as a Magnet® hospital, demonstrating the highest standards of nursing and patient care delivery. This pediatric academic health system offers expert care through a convenient, community-based primary care network and specialty care locations in the D.C. metropolitan area, including Maryland and Virginia. Children’s National is home to the Children’s National Research Institute and Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation. It is recognized for its expertise and innovation in pediatric care and as a strong voice for children through advocacy at the local, regional and national levels. As a non-profit, Children's National relies on generous donors to help ensure that every child receives the care they need.

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