Pfizer paid nearly $120 million for an app that can diagnose COVID
Pfizer announced the acquisition of small startup ResApp for $116 million. The deal was made for the sole purpose of gaining unconditional access to an application developed by the startup’s specialists. The program, as its creators claim, is capable of acting as a reliable diagnostic tool – with its help, it can detect coronavirus in a person.
Initially, the application was designed to detect pneumonia. To do this, it uses the analysis of cough sounds. In 2019, its functionality was expanded with the ability to recognize asthma, croup and bronchiolitis. When the world faced a coronavirus pandemic in 2020, scientists did a lot of work to adapt the program to the demands of modern digital medicine. Eventually, the technology was fine-tuned to perfection, and pilot tests showed good results.
Tests have shown that the software can detect at least 92% of cases of asthma, croup, and COVID-19. At the same time, the algorithm has the potential for further improvement. Pfizer began the “bidding process” by offering $65 million. However, the final amount of the deal turned out to be much higher. By promoting this software, the largest medical company expects to make the diagnosis of dangerous lung diseases available in countries where the level of medical care is low.