Eleven finalists will pitch their pediatric medical device innovation during the annual “Make Your Medical Device Pitch for Kids!” competition at the Sixth Annual Pediatric Device Innovation Symposium, to be held September 23 in Philadelphia. The event is hosted by the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation at Children’s National Health System.

This year’s competition focuses on pediatric cardiovascular devices, an area of significant need where advancements can make life-saving differences in the care of children. Each finalist will have 5 minutes to present their innovation to the judging panel composed of experts in pediatric medicine from around the country.

Up to four prizes of $25,000 each are awarded to the winning presentations and each awardee receives consultation services from the Sheikh Zayed Institute’s innovation resource network. Winners receive financial support and advisory services that help bring pediatric medical devices to market faster by bridging the gap that often follows the prototyping phase in the device development lifecycle.

“There is a profound need for cardiovascular devices made specifically for children, especially the younger subpopulations of children under 18 years of age, where an estimated 1 million children nationally currently live with a congenital heart defect and about 40,000 births annually are affected,” says Kolaleh Eskandanian, PhD, vice president and chief innovation officer at Children’s National and principal investigator of NCC-PDI.

“Given the significant need, we decided to focus this year’s competition on cardiovascular innovation with the emphasis on also making novel devices available sooner for younger kids,” adds Eskandanian. “We are grateful to all innovators who applied and are committed to continuing a dialogue with them as well as providing consultation services where we can.”

Other highlights planned for the symposium include a keynote address by Hemant Virkar, president and CEO of Digital Infuzion, Inc. on how real-world evidence can shape the regulatory pathway for devices; a live podcast of “BioTalk with Rich Bendis,” which will feature an interview with Vasum Peiris, MD, chief medical officer of the U.S. FDA’s Pediatrics and Special Populations, hosted by Richard Bendis, president and CEO of BioHealth Innovation, Inc.

Selected from a field of 45 submissions received from across the U.S. and internationally, the finalists and the pediatric medical devices they intend to pitch at this year’s competition include:

  • Bardy Diagnostics, Seattle: A single-patient use, continuous-recording, ambulatory ECG monitor that records for up to 7 days and is usable for all pediatric patients.
  • CardioSounds, Ann Arbor, Mich.: A non-invasive blood pressure monitor for the continuous and accurate collection of blood pressure data.
  • Circadiance, Pittsburgh: A next-generation cardiorespiratory monitor with Wi-Fi-enabled communication for use in a hospital or home care to monitor breathing, heart rate, and blood oxygen level in pre-term infants
  • Design Mentor, Inc., Pelham, N.H.: An extracorporeal blood pump for short-term cardiopulmonary support of pediatric open-heart surgery patients requiring full or partial cardiopulmonary bypass
  • Draper, Cambridge, Mass.: A pediatric valve designed for children, birth to age 6, that passively expands to a two-fold change in valve diameter to accommodate child growth
  • EspeRare Foundation, Geneva, Switzerland: A telemetry-based, flow-control technology platform for remote adjustment and precise control of pulmonary artery (PA) blood flow and PA blood pressure in congenital heart diseases
  • Flow Forward Medical, Inc., Fairway, Kan.: Pediatric arteriovenous fistula (AVF) eligibility system to improve hemodialysis treatment using AVF for children with end-stage renal disease
  • NuPulseCV, Raleigh, N.C: A minimally-invasive, long-term, mechanical, circulatory-support device for pediatric patients with cardiac dysfunction
  • PECA Labs, Pittsburgh: A novel, expandable, cardiovascular conduit that uses a minimally-invasive balloon catheter to allow for pediatric growth to reduce surgeries
  • PolyVascular Corporation, Houston: A minimally invasive pediatric pulmonary valve replacement approach for young children with congenital heart disease
  • PyrAmes, Inc., Cupertino, Calif.: A lightweight, wireless device to continuously and noninvasively monitor the blood pressure of neonates in real time