New Spectrum for Medical Devices

March 27, 2009
In a Report and Order (FCC 09-23) released last Friday, the FCC added spectrum at 401-402 MHz and 405-406 MHz to the existing Medical Implant Communications Service spectrum at 402-405 MHz. The name of the service has also been changed to the Medical Device Radiocommunications Service (MedRadio).

In a separate Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) (FCC 09-20) the FCC sought comment on allowing up to 24 megahertz of spectrum in the 413-457 MHz band to be used on a secondary basis by MedRadio under Part 95 of the FCC rules. The spectrum would share frequencies with government and amateur radio services in four band segments: 413-419 MHz, 426-432 MHz, 438-444 MHz, and 451-457 MHz.

"In particular, we are interested in providing access to spectrum for wireless MMNs (medical micro-power networks) that would be comprised of multiple networked implanted devices that employ wideband functional electrical stimulation – or FES – techniques," the commission said. "Use of MNNs could make FES technology more accessible to patients with paralyzed/impaired limbs and organs."

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