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'Bionic Eye' Treatment Paving the Way for Artificial Sight Continued from page 21

Opthalmology (BJO)2, indicating reproducible spatial resolution. This, in combination with the proven, stable, long-term function of the device, represents significant progress in the evolution of artificial sight. According to another study published in the Opthamology3, two types of real-world orientation and mobility (O&M) tests were performed: a door test where subjects were asked to find a door across a room and a line test where subjects were asked to follow a white line on the floor. Subjects performed statistically better with the Argus II system ‘on’ versus ‘off ’ in the visual tasks: » 96% of subjects improved in object localisation » 57% of subjects improved in motion discrimination » 23% of subjects improved in the discrimination of oriented gratings In addition, significant improvements in the O&M tasks were noted and the safety profile of Argus II was found to be comparable to other ophthalmic devices and procedures. Although there are several research efforts in retinal prostheses worldwide, none has demonstrated the reliability and efficacy of such a device in a multi-centered, longterm, controlled clinical trial involving 30 subjects, as was demonstrated by the Argus II in this study. Lyndon da Cruz, MD PhD Consultant Retinal Surgeon at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London , UK “ The fact that nearly all patients had a stable, safe and functioning system and that a majority of patients could recognise large letters, locate the position of objects and the best could read short words impressed us beyond our most optimistic expectations.”

22 April 2014

“This ‘artificial retina’ brings hope to thousands of people with advanced retinal diseases” added David Head, Chief Executive of the British Retinitis Pigmentosa Society. “The restoration of an element of vision may bring with it the restoration of independence and mobility that would greatly improve a patient’s quality of life.”

PROCEDURES IN THE USA In February 2013, after more than 20 years of research and development, Argus II received FDA approval making it the first and only approved longterm therapy for people with advanced RP in the U.S. In August 2013, the Centres for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) authorized both a new technology add-on payment (inpatient setting of care) and a transitional pass-through payment (outpatient setting of care) for the Argus II. These temporary payments are intended to facilitate access to new technologies for Medicare beneficiaries. Dr. Stanislao Rizzo, Director of the University Hospital Ophthalmic Department in Pisa, Italy, who first implanted the Argus II in Europe, provided guidance throughout the first procedure conducted in the USA. Dr. Rizzo has performed the largest number of implants on patients worldwide since receiving the CE Mark in 2011. Ultimate outcomes will not be known for some period of time until the patients go through a period of rehab to train them on using the Argus II. The Kellogg Eye Centre has been selected by Second Sight as a “Centre of Excellence” for its cutting-edge approach to medicine and unparalleled commitment to patient care. It is one of 12 centres in the US that are currently accepting consultations for patients. “This is a tremendous milestone, not only for the Kellogg Eye Centre and Second Sight, but also for those affected by RP in the United States,” stated Rob-

ert Greenberg, MD, PhD, President and CEO of Second Sight. “We are pleased to have the first implants take place at such a nationally recognised and respected institution. This device is going to positively impact the lives of those suffering from RP by providing renewed visual capabilities, which can help improve daily functioning and activities.” “Until now, we’ve had no treatment options to offer our patients with advanced RP,” said Kellogg’s Thiran Jayasundera, MD. “We hope the implant will bring light back into our patients’ worlds, allowing them to detect shapes of people and objects in their environment. It could allow them to gain more independence and the ability to go about their daily lives with more confidence.” The Kellogg Eye Centre has already selected further patients to receive the Argus II, while several other centres of excellence are also preparing for their first implants. Second Sight is actively partnering with additional hospitals throughout the U.S. to make the therapy more readily available.

NHS ENGLAND TO CONSIDER REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE PROCEDURE There are currently over 25,000 people in the UK diagnosed with RP4 and it is hoped that the £100,000 procedure will soon be more widely available via the NHS. The NHS’s Prescribed Specialised Services Advisory Group (PSSAG) considers whether to include treatments which are intended for fewer than 500 cases per year in England within the definition of specialised services. PSSAG considered Argus II at its meeting in September 2013. The outcome of those discussions is still pending, but once a decision has been made the

The Journal of mHealth Vol 1 Issue 2 (Apr 2014)  

In this issue we aim to bring you an in-depth analysis of the scope of mHealth, to consider the wide variety of topics and technologies that...

The Journal of mHealth Vol 1 Issue 2 (Apr 2014)  

In this issue we aim to bring you an in-depth analysis of the scope of mHealth, to consider the wide variety of topics and technologies that...

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