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NIH Taps Six Firms, One University to Create Digital Health Tools

One university and six companies have secured contracts from the National Institutes of Health to produce digital health tools in support of coronavirus response efforts.

All seven awardees will aim to develop software, wearable devices or mobile applications intended for contact tracing, health monitoring and test results tracking, NIH said Tuesday.

Phase 1 will focus on demonstrating the feasibility of selected projects and Phase 2 will commence through a contractual option that will include additional funds to support further development and demonstration work.

The agency estimates that the total amount of contracts will reach $22.8M if all participants move forward to the second phase.

“The tools these organizations plan to develop could allow us to use containment efforts, like COVID-19 testing, social distancing and quarantine, precisely when and where they’re needed,” said Norman Sharpless, director of NIH’s National Cancer Institute.

NCI and the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, also part of NIH, chose projects from the seven awardees out of almost 200 submissions. These development projects will support a $306M effort, among other NCI and NIBIB pursuits, to address COVID-19, increase testing capacity and conduct serological studies.

The awardees are:

  • Evidation Health
  • iCrypto
  • physIQ
  • Shee Atika Enterprises
  • University of California, San Francisco
  • Vibrent Health

Separately, NIBIB awarded CareEvolution a contract to provide its SAFER-COVID assessment tool that works to fuse data on self-reported symptoms, electronic health records, claims and information from wearable devices in order to help users determine whether they can return to their normal routines.

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