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FCC and FDA Sign a Joint Memorandum Outlining Responsibilities for Wireless Healthcare

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WASHINGTON, July 26, 2010 – Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski and Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Margaret Hamburg signed a statement of principles on wireless healthcare at a joint FCC/FDA meeting on wireless medical technology.

Hamburg said that the partnership between the two agencies is important because of the tremendous potential of wireless medical innovation, while navigating the delicate balance between innovation and safety.

In the new arena of wireless healthcare, the jurisdiction of the FDA and the FCC will overlap; one governing the safety of the devices in the medical field, the other governing the spectrum and frequencies used.

The agreement reads, “the FDA and the FCC agree to build upon this initiative launched today to proactively serve the national interest in finding innovative solutions to America’s health care challenges.”

The two leaders also signed a memorandum of understanding, and enumerated how collaboration between their agencies is critical to this foray into a new industry.

It is vitally important that we work together on issues that affect wireless and medical technologies, Genachowski said.

The joint meeting had roundtable and panel discussions by experts as well as a showcasing of devices by prominent manufacturers.

The National Broadband Plan’s suggestion to free up spectrum can pave the way for new wireless medical devices, as well as reduce costs and improve quality of life, said Genachowski.

The memorandum can be found at:

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