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Medtronic’s MyCareLink Data on Older Patients Found Positive


Leading medical device player Medtronic plc MDT recently released favorable data on its app-based remote cardiac monitoring. The study, which was presented at the Heart Rhythm 2017, evaluated 5,595 patients with Medtronic pacemakers who were assigned a MyCareLink Smart app-based remote monitor.

The study results demonstrate high usage of Medtronic’s MyCareLink Smart app-based remote monitor by older patients.

The study revealed that 88.4% patients of all ages who were prescribed this new technology used their smart devices to successfully activate their MyCareLink Smart mobile app. Also 89.7% of the patients remained "adherent" by transmitting data to the Medtronic CareLink Network within 12 months (the minimum frequency recommended by the HRS and European Heart Rhythm Association expert consensus).

It also contradicts the popular belief that older patients seldom get adapted to newer technologies. The study shows that age is not a clinically significant factor in activating or adhering the app-based monitoring at 12 months. Data revealed that 89.4% patients aged 71 and older used the app to transmit data compared with 86.7% patients aged between 18 and 50 and 91% for those aged between 51 and 70.

With a significant number of pacemakers being implanted to older patients over 65 years of age each year in the U.S., this study result shows how fast the concept of remote cardiac monitoring is grasping the market. This, in turn, is likely to further benefit Medtronic’s pacemaker business in the U.S.

In this regard we note that, MyCareLink Smart patient monitor is the world`s first app-based remote monitoring system for patients with implantable cardiac devices. This was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2015.

With the MyCareLink Smart monitor, patients can use their own smartphone or tablet technology, with cellular or Wi-Fi service, to securely transmit data from their cardiac device to their physicians, who can then interpret the data to make treatment decisions.

Price Performance

Medtronic's escalating costs and expenses continue to weigh on margins heavily. Also, unfavorable foreign exchange remains a drag. This is reflected in the company’s share price trend too. In the past three months, Medtronic traded below the Zacks categorized Medical – Products industry. Per the last share price movement, overall the company gained 4.8%, which is less than 5.6% gain of the broader industry over this period.

However, the company’s consistent focus on innovation and product launch, which includes the latest favorable study result on remote cardiac monitoring, is quite encouraging.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Medtronic currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the broader medical sector include Luminex Corporation LMNX, Hologic, Inc. HOLX and Edward Lifesciences, Inc. EW. Notably, Luminex sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), while Hologic and Edward Lifesciences carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Luminex has an expected long-term adjusted earnings growth of almost 16.3%. The stock added roughly 17.0%, over the last three months.

Hologic has a long-term expected earnings growth rate of 11.33%. The stock has a solid one-year return of roughly 30.5%.

Edward Lifesciences recorded a stellar EPS growth rate of almost 16% (last three to five years of actual earnings).

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