Armor Medical Co-founders win NIH prize to accelerate maternal health wearable development.

The team was recognized for its efforts to develop a low-cost wearable device that will improve detection of the leading causes of maternal mortality

1/30/20232 min read

Sources: - RADx Tech for Maternal Health Challenge ; The Source - WashU - O’Brien team wins NIH prize to further develop maternal health device

Armor Medical is honored to work with Washington University in St. Louis as part of the National Institutes of Health’s Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics Technology (RADx Tech) for Maternal Health Challenge. Together, we are accelerating the development of our product, Maternal aRMOR, as a wearable sensor for the early detection of postpartum hemorrhage.

The Armor team is one of 15 winners to receive a $20,000 prize in the first phase of the RADx Tech challenge. Ultimately, the National Institutes of Health will award up to $8 million in cash prizes to stimulate the development of technologies to improve maternal health outcomes for those who live in areas lacking access to maternity care.

The U.S. maternal mortality rate is the highest of any developed nation (Commonwealth Fund, 2020) and continues to climb. This public health crisis is exacerbated by the fact that millions of individuals live in “maternity care deserts” with little or no access to maternity care (March of Dimes, 2020). In response, the National Institutes of Health launched the RADx Tech for Maternal Health Challenge to help improve health outcomes in maternity care deserts.

This award is an important next step in the clinical translation of the Maternal aRMOR device, originally developed at Washington University in St. Louis by Christine O’Brien, Ph.D., assistant professor of biomedical engineering in the McKelvey School of Engineering, and her collaborator Leo Schmuylovich, M.D., Ph. D., assistant professor of medicine in the Department of Dermatology at the School of Medicine. They designed Maternal aRMOR as a wearable sensor to remotely detect and alert providers to severe bleeding after delivery, or postpartum hemorrhage, enabling the extension of care to those living in maternity care deserts.

Drs. O’Brien and Shmuylovich recently co-founded Armor Medical Inc. with Kelsey Mayo, Ph.D., to lead the translational development of this cutting-edge technology. As CEO, Dr. Mayo brings deep expertise in precision medicine, product management, and business development, to grow an organization capable of translating technologies that improve maternal health, globally. Dr. Mayo commented, “The RADx Tech challenge signals an important shift in the public recognition of the current maternal health crisis. We are honored to be awarded this opportunity. Our sleeves are rolled up and we are excited to work with the experts at RADx in the next phase of this challenge.”

In the next phase, the Armor team will work closely with RADx’s team of healthcare technology commercialization and content experts to help identify the best path to bring Maternal aRMOR to market in the next 2-3 years. The six finalists who make it through the RADx Tech innovation funnel will receive up to $500,000 each.

Armor Medical RADx CoFounders
Armor Medical RADx CoFounders
Armor Medical RADx NIH Maternal Health ChallengeArmor Medical RADx NIH Maternal Health Challenge