Calling it a first for Japan, Cyberdyne has revealed that the country’s Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare has approved the HAL for medical use, a robotic therapeutic device to improve patients’ walking function.
Intended to help patients with slowly progressing neuromuscular diseases — such as spinal muscular atrophy and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis — HAL had received designation as a medical device for orphan diseases.
As a result, the Tsukuba, Japan-based company received regulatory signoff within eight months of the March 25 application submission date.
Discussions on the treatment’s coverage under public medical insurance are under way, according to the company. — Elizabeth Hollis