The Peoria-based health system is the parent of Rockford’s OSF Saint Anthony Medical Center. In February, the health system activated OSF Ventures, a $75 million fund that invests in companies intent on developing medical technologies and applications to improve patient outcomes or reduce health care costs.
Pulse Therapeutics, the St. Louis company, has developed a technique to accelerate the delivery of drugs through the body’s vascular system. The company’s Magnetically Enhanced Diffusion technology employs miniscule, biologically safe iron particles to more quickly transport FDA-approved clot-busting medicine through blood vessels — a breakthrough that could provide obvious benefits to the roughly 800,000 people in the U.S. who suffer new strokes every year.
Keeping people healthy grows more expensive every day. Investment funds such as OSF Ventures are increasingly common among health systems looking to get in on the ground floor with new health care technologies and strategies that improve patient health, reduce costs and, ideally, provide a big payoff. Ascension Ventures, a subsidiary of St. Louis-based Ascension Health, manages more than $500 million for such investments.
“First and foremost, we’re bringing new technologies and therapies to our hospitals and practitioners to provide better care and outcomes for patients,” said Matthew Warrens, vice president innovation at OSF HealthCare. “At the same time, we’re finding opportunities to invest in some really innovative companies that we feel we can provide value to.”
OSF Ventures actively searches for cutting-edge solutions in the realm of information technology, diagnostics and medical devices that aim to improve health care outcomes and reduce the financial burden facing the health care system. Clinical experts within the health system help vet investment opportunities.