The University of Minnesota and medical device manufacturers have partnered to launch an organization for cybersecurity research, outreach and workforce training.
Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) , Boston Scientific (NYSE: BSX), Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) , Smiths Medical and UnitedHealth Group’s (NYSE: UNH) Optum contributed financial support as founding partners of the University of Minnesota Center for Medical Device Cybersecurity.
The Center for Medical Device Cybersecurity will be part of the College of Science and Engineering’s Technological Leadership Institute and also collaborate with the Earl E. Bakken Medical Devices Center and the University of Minnesota’s Office of the Vice President for Research. The center will host roundtables, a hackathon, industry networking, training and offer summer internships and a medical device cybersecurity short course starting this fall.
“Cybersecurity for medical devices is critical in retaining the trust consumers place in health care companies for how the technology is used, and how health information is protected,” Optum Chief Information Security Officer Allison Miller said in a news release. “By partnering with academic organizations, industry experts, and our peers we can help formulate policies, regulatory proposals and state-of-the-art testing so that we not only support the long-term success of secure medical devices, but also protect the patients who rely on medical devices for their care therapies.”
Katey Pelican of the University of Minnesota Strategic Partnerships and Research Collaborative is interim director of the center, which is seeking industry members and organizations for partnerships.
The center will “work closely with the medical device manufacturers and health care delivery industries to help fuel innovation and discovery in this space,” Pelican said in the news release. “Through the establishment of the Center for Medical Device Cybersecurity, the University is poised to develop future workforce leaders and conduct cutting-edge research that will elevate the entire industry in this vitally important and expanding space.”