As seen in the August 2014 issue of Entrepreneur Magazine:
Monitoring the Supply Closet
A Chicago-Area Company Helps Hospitals Track Inventory –and Recalled Devices
When Peter Casady, CEO and co-founder of Champion Medical Technologies, joined his brother Thomas, in launching their Lake Zurich, Illinois-based company in 2005, they knew that they’d make an incredible team.
Peter brought decades of experience in the medical device field to the business; Thomas was already a well-established software engineer and developer.
The duo saw opportunity in the market, in this case the way in which the medical industry tracks valuable inventory. “There’s a huge issue with missing inventory,” Casady says. “Things don’t get billed to patients the way they should or they go missing between different departments of hospitals.”
Champion’s launch product, GraftTracker®, is tissue tracking software specifically designed for hospitals that use human and synthetic tissue grafts and cells. The company next introduced UDITracker®, implant tracking software that uses barcode scanners and smartphone apps to create a single, streamlined solution for managing medical device implants.
But it was in 2012, when the company debuted RecallConnect® that things took off.
RecallConnect, the only real-time recall inventory matching system on the market, was a Chicago Innovation Award winner in 2012, due to its unique patient safety features. Casady developed the product after learning of patients and their families who had suffered after receiving recalled products. RecallConnect provides hospitals with automated medical device (IE heart valves, hip/knee implants and stents) recall notifications. Those are then matched in real-time to inventory, including patient records, thus saving lives and decreasing hospital liability in less than a second.
To round out the product offerings, all of Champion’s products are integrated with the company’s RFID-enabled swipe, grab and go! storage cabinets, refrigerators or freezers. “Our storage units provide 100 percent accuracy of who takes a device out and when,” Casady says.
To handle demand, the company has had to expand. Now 25 employees work for the company (up from five in 2010) and Champion now serves 200 hospitals nationwide. “In the last six months, we’ve had inquiries from 500 more hospitals that want to implement our services,” he says.
To allow the company’s technology to perform at its best, Champion equipped its office with voice and internet from Comcast Business.
“Keeping our lines of communication on track is critical and our services from Comcast Business are an important part of our business,” Casady says. “It’s vital in a business like ours. We have customer service people who have to stay connected via high-speed internet and phone.
As Champion continues to expand, expect more diverse products. “Innovation is so important for a business like ours,” Casady says. “There are a lot of other things we want to do–and we have many partners we’re working with. We’re far from done.”