Army Consortium Wants Cutting-Edge Hemorrhage Detection Technology

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Life-threatening blood loss has accounted for more than 33% of prehospital deaths and 50% of deaths occurring within 24 hours after a traumatic injury.

The Army’s Medical Technology Enterprise Consortium aims to accelerate the advancement of noninvasive hemorrhage detection technology. 

According to a pre-announcement publication posted this week, the biomedical technology consortium created by the Army to boost the research and production of innovative technologies will soon accept proposals that could help boost patient outcomes and, ideally, save more lives of patients who suffer from the malady. 

“Hemorrhage is the leading cause of trauma-related death in both civilian and military populations,” officials said in the document. “This supports the vital need for early detection and intervention.”

According to the MTEC, hemorrhage, or life-threatening blood loss, has accounted for more than 33% of prehospital deaths and 50% of deaths occurring within 24 hours after a traumatic injury. Further, around half of all preventable combat-related deaths that occur before reaching a military treatment facility are hemorrhage-related.

“A study of 4,596 battlefield fatalities from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom determined that hemorrhage accounted for 91% of potentially survivable fatalities occurring prior to arrival at a [medical facility],” MTEC added. 

For that reason, the consortium is looking for solutions that are not invasive but can monitor and alert medics when patients are facing impending or significant hemorrhage or is at risk of going into hemorrhagic shock. The technology would need to be compatible with military operational environments and easily usable by combat medics. It would also need to be cleared by the Food and Drug Administration and require no specialized personnel or maintenance requirements. 

The MTEC notes that two federal laboratories have previously developed algorithms that can detect decompensation due to hemorrhage using standard vital sign monitors. 

“Since government laboratories are not eligible to serve as the prime contractor of white papers in response to MTEC funding opportunities, we encourage potential Offerors to partner with these laboratories as appropriate,” the consortium said. 

The request for project proposals will launch soon and the acquisition approach will be conducted in two stages. White papers will first be submitted through the RPP on the MTEC’s website or Fedbizopps, once it’s officially posted. Then offerors selected will be invited to submit a formal proposal in stage two. Submissions will only be open to MTEC members. 

MTEC anticipates that one or more awards will be made and notes that there is approximately $2 million available for Defense Health Program Research, Development, and Engineering dollars for fiscal 2020, and additional funding may be made available for potential follow-on work.