Hitachi is pulling its Americas-based ventures into a new entity, Hitachi Healthcare America Corp.
"We are focused on the long-term future of Hitachi's Healthcare commitment in the Americas and are taking deliberate, strategic actions to improve the company's overall operations while enhancing our competitive position and future growth," senior vice president and general manager of the Healthcare Division, Hitachi America, Yasuhiko Taniguchi said in a statement.
Slated to take place April 1, the company will first move Hitachi Aloka Medical America into Hitachi Medical Systems America and then change that company's name. The new firm will be Hitachi's regional headquarters, responsible for sales and maintenance. It will also expand its focus into health care innovation and medical informatics in the Americas – “such as using radiation therapy treatment data and artificial intelligence to support creating better treatment plans,” the company stated.
As part of this effort, the firm has also announced plans to make its Innovation and Informatics Division – now within Hitachi America – part of Hitachi Healthcare America.
Health care is one of the four major efforts within Hitachi's Social Innovation business.
The move is expected to help the company grow and change with the changing health care landscape.
"Integrating our medical imaging operations will allow us to accelerate the design and development of cost-effective health care technology and services offerings, while continuing to provide a superior level of service and support to our customers and partners in the Americas," said Donald Broomfield, president and CEO, Hitachi Medical Systems America.
Hitachi's business moves also made news last March 2016, when it partnered with Redien Technologies, a radiation sensor manufacturer, to work on a promising new diagnostic imaging modality
called photon counting computer tomography (PCCT).
The pair agreed, as HCB News Reported at the time, to work together to develop the data acquisition technology required to process the high amount of data that is generated from Redien's Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CZT) semiconductor radiation sensors. They will also develop the packaging technology that is required to assemble the sensors into a detector module.
PCCT is a form of CT, but it extracts tomographic images from the measured amount of X-ray photons. CT measures the summation of the energy of X-ray photons, but PCCT can measure the energy of detected X-ray photons individually, which allows much more information to be acquired.
Last February, Hitachi and Philips agreed to collaborate
to address the inability to share images rapidly across health systems.
“We wanted to address the biggest challenges health care organizations face in making their many millions of images, often stored in multivendor systems and infrastructures from various departments, rapidly available to virtually any clinician at any location within the health system,” Mark Khalil, global director of solutions marketing and strategy for enterprise imaging informatics at Philips, told HCB News at the time.
The collaboration will take advantage of Philips’ expertise in enterprise medical image management solutions and Hitachi’s digital health data management capabilities to create a new vendor-neutral archive (VNA) solution. The companies intend to make it so clinicians can access multi-discipline medical imaging information in less than three seconds.