ECRI Institute Sheds Unbiased Light on New Healthcare Innovations for 2018

Annual Top 10 list gives evidence-based insight into apps for opioid addiction, genetic testing, acuity-adaptable rooms, and virtual reality for pediatrics

January 22, 2018

PLYMOUTH MEETING, PA—As healthcare leaders tackle their capital planning and value analysis challenges in 2018, the last thing they’re looking for is an unwelcome surprise from another new technology that’s being hyped in the marketplace.

ECRI Institute, an independent nonprofit that researches the best approaches to improving patient care, announces the release of its annual Top 10 Hospital C-suite Watch List. The report helps healthcare leaders understand new and emerging innovations, including new apps to help treat opioid addiction, acuity-adaptable rooms, insertable cardiac monitors, and virtual reality for pediatric patients.

"This year we selected a range of technologies and infrastructure issues hospital leaders and their teams are facing, will be facing, or should consider," says Diane C. Robertson, director, Health Technology Assessment, ECRI Institute.

Topping the list this year is the first FDA-approved medical app for opioid addiction. A form of telehealth, the app offers a way to strengthen recovery with ongoing, long-term support.

Direct-to-consumer genetic testing, coming in at No. 2, is changing how frontline clinicians interact with patients who pursue tests on their own.

"Hospital leaders often are not aware how much lab budgets are being blown by genetic testing, inappropriate use from lack of evidence-based information, and unreimbursed testing. Now that direct-to-consumer testing provides health information to patients, it will drive them to seek attention to understand the implications of their test results," adds Robertson.

Other topics include microhospitals; a non-invasive device for treating Alzheimer’s disease; neonatal MRI systems in the NICU; GammaTile™ Cs-131 radiation therapy for fighting brain tumors; and a special needle for reducing pain during blood draw.

"Nobody pays us to produce our C-suite watch list—it’s built on our deep, independent expertise for how to address today’s and tomorrow’s healthcare challenges. Many healthcare leaders use this as a springboard for informed decision making in their capital planning programs and strategic initiatives," says Robert P. Maliff, director, strategic growth and business development, ECRI Institute.

Available as a public service, the new report gives hospital leaders evidence-based perspectives on innovations and care delivery trends that have the potential to impact cost, quality, and patient outcomes. Each entry includes actionable recommendations in a quick-glance “What to Do” section.

The watch list draws upon ECRI Institute’s 50 years of experience evaluating and providing technical assistance on the safety, efficacy, and cost-effectiveness of health technologies. It reflects the unbiased, independent judgment of the Institute’s multidisciplinary staff of clinical and technical researchers, engineers, risk management specialists, and healthcare planners and consultants.

ECRI Institute’s 2018 Top 10 Hospital C-Suite Watch List is available for download at (registration required). For additional information about the watch list or ECRI Institute’s evidence-based research, patient safety resources, and technology support services, contact ECRI Institute by telephone at (610) 825-6000, ext. 5655; by e-mail at; or by mail at 5200 Butler Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462 USA.

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  • ECRI Institute releases 2018 Top 10 Watch List to help hospital C-suite track new and emerging technologies
  • Apps for #opioid users and consumer #genetictesting tops @ECRI_Institute list on major issues hospitals should watch #2018TechWatch

About ECRI Institute
ECRI Institute (, a nonprofit organization, dedicates itself to bringing the discipline of applied scientific research to healthcare to discover which medical procedures, devices, drugs, and processes enable improved patient care. As pioneers in this science for 50 years, ECRI Institute marries experience and independence with the objectivity of evidence-based research. Strict conflict-of-interest guidelines ensure objectivity. ECRI Institute is designated an Evidence-based Practice Center by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. ECRI Institute PSO is listed as a federally certified Patient Safety Organization by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

For press inquiries, contact:
Laurie Menyo, Director of Public Relations and Marketing Communications
(610) 825-6000, ext. 5310