GE Healthcare is using local engineers in India to create products that suit the local environment, a tactic designed to overcome some of the unseen factors that can creep up on the development of a product. A relatively small budget project to design a portable ECG for the Indian market required, besides engineering prowess, local foresight to know the dusty environment, and to incorporate the same battle tested printer as is used throughout the country’s bus kiosks.
GE Healthcare engineer Davy Hwang’s marching orders were straightforward. Take a 15-lb. electrocardiograph machine that cost $5.4 million and took three and a half years to develop. Squeeze the same technology into a portable device that weighs less than three pounds and can be held with one hand. Oh, and develop it in 18 months for just 60% of its wholesale cost. “He thought I was crazy,” says Hwang’s boss, Omar Ishrak, CEO of GE Healthcare’s clinical systems unit, based in Wauwatosa, Wis.
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A feel good GE ad showing off the MAC 400:
Product page: MAC 400 Resting ECG System