Company news: Sudler & Hennessey, Merck, WebMD and Fitbit
The non-profit American Legislative Exchange Council, known by the shorthand ALEC, has lost Merck's support, reported NJ.com. The group is known for its anti-regulation stance and overturning healthcare reform is among its task forces' priorities. Merck's membership will end with 2012, and NJ.com noted that Johnson & Johnson left the organization in June.
WebMD launched a free app to help patients with chronic pain. The WebMD Pain Coach can offer 588 physician-approved tips, 25 videos, 379 articles and 21 slideshows, in addition to a tool that helps patients set goals and track their pain and their progress. The app also gives patients a chance to create a journal they can share with their doctor that can help identify daily activities and their pain state and possible triggers, as well as the option to receive a tip every day. The app's information was designed for patients with back pain, fibromyalgia, migraine and osteoarthritis, among other conditions.
Activity-tracking company Fitbit has launched two more lifestyle monitoring devices, reported Mobihealth. The new iterations include the 24-hour One tracker that provides activity feedback – with suggestions like take the stairs instead of the elevator – as well as tracks sleep patterns. The company also released the button-free Zip that tracks steps, distance and burned calories. Both share activity data via Bluetooth tech. Mobihealth noted that One replaces the Ultra which launched last year.