An Interview With Gilero’s Director of Integrated Systems

The Integrated Systems team at Gilero is dedicated to designing, developing and manufacturing electromechanical medical devices and electromechanical drug delivery systems. While Gilero has been providing design & development services since its inception in 2002, and later added manufacturing services, the addition of a dedicated team for electromechanical projects was more recent. A combination of design, product development, electrical and quality engineers, with expertise in mechanical, electrical, software and firmware engineering, make up Gilero’s Integrated Systems team. Todd Macy, who has spent his career building electromechanical devices and systems for the medical market, oversees this group as the Director of Integrated Systems.

Why did Gilero see the need to form a team dedicated to electromechanical devices?

“Gilero has become synonymous with sophisticated device design & development. Given that we can handle the entire process, taking a customer’s idea for a medical device and providing them with concept development, design engineering, prototyping, testing, regulatory support, clinical builds, all the way through finished device manufacturing, our customers rely on us to solve problems and meet their needs throughout this process. When Gilero was founded, we were really focused on mechanical engineering for consumable medical devices. Our customers came to trust Gilero’s abilities on the consumables side, and in all areas where we provide service. As the medical and drug delivery markets evolved, more and more medical devices began to take advantage of the capabilities that electrical solutions provide. Based on these market needs, we thought it made sense to call out this area of expertise and have a designated team with an understanding of electromechanical device requirements.”

How did Gilero manage to grow and expand its offerings to include the Integrated Systems team?

“Our growth has been in many ways a response to the call of what our customers were asking for. We got really good at design engineering and were continually being asked to provide support for prototyping beyond just design, so we built out robust prototyping capabilities. Then customers wanted DV&V testing and regulatory support, so we developed those services in-house and our offerings just kept growing. Many of the consumable medical devices we have developed operate within an electromechanical system. Being able to design & develop both the consumable and electromechanical components under one roof offers tremendous efficiency to the design of a comprehensive system. We listen to our market and our customers and respond to those needs. We understand the value of what we bring to the table. If we can provide a wider and better package of services without sacrificing quality, everyone wins. Gilero naturally evolved to where we are today, providing contract design, development and manufacturing services to medical and pharmaceutical customers around the world.”

What are the benefits of forming a team that specializes in Integrated Systems?

“Engineers on our Integrated Systems team still work with all of the other engineering, human factors, regulatory and manufacturing experts we have across the company. The benefit of calling it out is that we have the ability to focus on both the types of products we’re developing as well as on the expertise that is needed for those electromechanical products. For example, designing an electrical circuit requires a much different skill set than designing a fluid circuit. Other directors and I can look holistically at a project and easily identify an abundance of resources that can meet the needs of each specific customer and project.”

Why is your team called Integrated Systems and not something like ‘Electromechanical Engineering Team’?

“Integrated Systems means we are integrators of technology, whether that technology is sensing solutions, motion control, computing platforms, or something else. We design & develop medical and drug delivery devices, but what we really do is design the mechanical piece of a device as well as the electrical hardware and software and any other pieces that go along with it, ensuring that all of those designs integrate seamlessly to provide a device that functions as intended.”

Who is a part of Gilero’s Integrated Systems team?

“Our diverse team is made up of individuals who focus on different parts of the electromechanical design & development process, but the thing they all have in common is a strong background in engineering and medical devices. When we add new team members, their past career experiences are often a huge value-add for us. We have folks who have worked in imaging, blood collection, robotics, surgical instruments, biotech, etc., and we use that as cross pollination to pull on the past experiences of our employees.”

What kind of electromechanical devices has your team developed?

“We have designed & developed a number of electromechanical medical devices and electromechanical systems for drug delivery. With respect to customer privacy and confidentiality agreements, which are common in the medical device industry, we can’t publicize all of the devices that we’ve worked on. However, a small sampling of some of our electromechanical projects include: a phantom heart pump for MRI use, peritoneal dialysis machine and cassette, infusion pumps and cassettes, electronic drug delivery devices such as inhalers, wearable smart sensor, and electronic syringe accessories.”

What does the future look like for Gilero’s Integrated Systems team?

“With Gilero’s rich history in fluid handling and drug delivery, it’s a natural fit for our Integrated Systems team to continue down that path. Electromechanical drug delivery devices in particular often have other features integrated, like apps that work alongside the device. Not only does the design have to come from an area of mechanical and fluid handling expertise, it also requires expertise with software and app development while navigating the regulatory pathway. Gilero is good at digging into a problem statement from a customer and providing solutions based on our knowledge and experience. If the demand for medical devices and drug delivery systems with connected apps continues to grow, I think it makes sense for us to take on a lot more electromechanical device projects that look like that. Ultimately, when customers are searching for a company with a deep understanding of the medtech industry, and expertise with everything from consumable medical devices to complex electromechanical systems, Gilero will be there as a trusted partner who can help them succeed.”