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Inspired by Carestream Health:
How Minerva PLM for Medical Device contributes to smarter product innovation and improved user experience at the world-class manufacturer 

 

Based in Rochester, NY, United States, Carestream Health aims at revolutionizing connected, technology-enabled X-ray imaging systems for medical, non-destructive testing.

Bringing to market smarter products and services requires a combination of continuous innovation, manufacturing, and supply chain collaboration, seamless PLM, MES, and ERP integration, and robust quality control throughout.

In this post, we examine how PLM contributes to smarter product development and improved user experience, such as opening the door to new revenue streams.

 

How can PLM contribute to managing new product requirements gathered from customer feedback?

Any company looking at improving and growing their product and service portfolio will take great interest in gathering and acting upon customer feedback. Carestream Health has increased their portfolio of connected products within the last decade. Connected devices enable you to receive critical information on-field performance, user experience, maintenance, service, and so on.

Having been a heavy user of the Lotus Notes client-server software platform for many years, Carestream began their Aras Innovator journey in 2010. The goal was to improve the ability to incorporate customer feedback as well as device data.

In 2016, the Minerva Medical Device PLM solution was implemented to improve Project Management, especially improving the management of deliverables for both medical and non-medical device projects. After migrating a vast amount of data from the former Lotus Notes platform into Medical Device PLM, now Carestream Health has all their DHF information inside the Aras platform.

The solution now contributes to managing design features, how they align to requirements, technology, cost, weight attributes. Data traceability can optimize time to search and access to data, reduce data duplication, improve supplier performance, and quality management.

 

How can PLM contribute to improving product quality and technology integration?

Product quality is somewhat driven by legislative health and safety requirements, but this is not it. PLM platforms typically double up as a Quality Management System to track issues and risks, assess and implement changes, collaborate in real-time across the enterprise and with the supply chain. Per FDA requirements, medical device companies must keep extensive project and design documentation in a regulated repository. These documents are part of the Design History File and must record the revisions and approvals per the phases and gates process of a project.

Because Carestream Health has increased their portfolio of connected products, the demand for robust traceability also increased. Integrating more technology into a product requires greater robust traceability to maintain the fleet in operation. Not only the products got smarter, but also the way their engineering, manufacturing and usage data are managed had to become smarter.

Now, Minerva PLM is able to support new product innovation in many ways:

  • Integrating suppliers early in the R&D process
  • Sourcing more efficiently suppliers and technologies
  • Tracking more closely cost, weight, and other delivery attributes
  • Reducing the need for duplication by optimizing how drawings are updated from 3D and simulation models

 

How can PLM contribute to better project management?

Today, the commercialization and IT projects at Carestream Health have been standardized using phases and gates inside Aras Innovator. And with Minerva Medical Device PLM, project managers can create the project structure and deliverables, and manage status in a very easy way with good visibility, allowing project managers to identify deliverables that are overdue, on track, not done yet etc.

Other advantages of using the Minerva Medical Device PLM project management module include:

  • Performance – a full list of DDP deliverables can be created in less than two hours
  • Repeatability – all projects will contain the same deliverables specified by the template
  • Fewer steps – users can now create new deliverables without having to exit the Deliverable Matrix
  • Access – Users have quick access to all project/product deliverables in one location
  • History – DHF maintains history of what revision was released at each phase

 

About Carestream Health

Carestream Health is an internationally successful leader in medical imaging systems and healthcare information technology solutions. Carestream products can be found in 90 percent of hospitals worldwide.

The company delivers scalable solutions for every step of the diagnostic imaging process, from exam ordering, image capture and diagnosis to results distribution, billing and beyond to customers across the globe. Among its products, is digital medical solutions, medical film, and printing solutions as well as high-quality products for a wide range of industrial applications for non-destructing testing.

Carestream employs more than 7.300 employees across North America, Europe, Middle East, and Asia.

 

About the author

Thomas Skogen

Thomas is an expert in Supply Chain and Manufacturing Optimization with more than 10 years of experience originating from Medical Device and High-Tech & Electronic Industries. He comes with a background as an Electronics engineer, complemented with a Master in Technology Management. Thomas has held positions in multinational corporations such as Nilfisk, heading the internal optimization program as well as the supply chain organization.

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