According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), greater than $1 Tn in fitness care prices and lost wages can be at once attributed to cardiovascular illnesses (CVD) and coronary heart ailment (CHD). In context of India, for over 60 Mn CVD sufferers, there are handiest eight,000 cardiologists plus the diagnostic equipment cost lies heavy on the doctor’s pocket. Additionally, ECG machines price someplace between $619-$2322 (INR 40K-INR 1.Five Lakhs) in India, thereby accomplishing best the lucky few within the metros and larger hospitals.
Solving for this pain point caused the foundation of Uber Diagnostics by using Avin Agarwal, and Ashim Roy in 2013, as an low priced coronary heart analysis product for the Indian population.
The duo performed their studies along side St. John’s Research Institute in Bengaluru. At that time, Ashim and Avin had been operating with a group of NGOs. A chance meeting led the 2 to speak about the present problems and gaps within the Indian CVD scene and the two desired to do something about it. Together.
Begins Ashim, “If a important affected person makes it to the health facility, the system of intervention at that factor in time is most probable an invasive manner – like pass surgery. These things price upwards of INR 1.9 Lakhs-INR 3.2 Lakhs ($three,000 to $five,000) in India, which is quite steeply-priced, and insurance doesn’t virtually help decrease the cost. When it involves monetary problems like those, the remedy is not to make the invasive process cheaper – it’s to attempt to diagnose the hassle in advance.”
Separately, Ashim and Avin have been seeking to cope with the lack of diagnostics skills at number one healthcare facilities (PHC). Together, they wanted to broaden a strong and clinical grade diagnostics equipment this is effortlessly transportable and less costly.
In 2015, their research and hard work led them to developing their first product, Cardiotrack – a B2B solution aimed to enhance number one healthcare in emerging economies. Basically, it's far a handheld electrocardiogram (ECG) display that is straightforward to apply, affords medical grade output and plays predictive diagnosis to begin intervention at once, thus reducing the need for invasive intervention. It is a community-related tool; in which a affected person’s ECG test may be straight away transmitted to a cardiologist everywhere inside the world.
In the same year, the team moved its headquaters to Singapore and raised an angel funding round from numerous HNIs from Singapore and the USA. The startup has till date deployed the budget toward R&D, product certification, branding, and sales and advertising and marketing efforts.
Cardiotrack: The IoT Solution To Heartcare Woes
To break it down, Cardiotrack is essentially a scientific equipment that allows medical doctors to take a 12-factor ECG from a patient. It can then be transferred to a phone or pill via Bluetooth and, from there, may be uploaded to the cloud. With the brought cloud aspect, it permits the outcomes to be sent to any health practitioner for assessment. It also increases an alarm if it detects an irregularity at some point of the test. Cardiotrack boasts that it’s so simple to use that training for the device takes a maximum of 20 mins or less.
The Cardiotrack answer has four essential additives: namely, Sensors – that offer a entire 12-channel diagnostic grade ECG included with sensors to reveal blood oxygen saturation and blood pressure, a cell app that shows, analyses, and stores the patient’s diagnostic reviews, its cloud service that offers a at ease storage of patient records on a non-public cloud.
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And, finally what Ashim calls as ‘Cardiotrack intervention,’ a tele-intervention platform that allows the health practitioner to hook up with specialists and hospitals to initiate intervention. “Everything changed when we brought the idea of portability and delivered the cloud element. Cardiotrack was now now not just a diagnostic tool; it became an included healthcare IoT platform.”
The affected person information is captured at the healthcare centre by the primary care health practitioner the usage of sensors. This facts is stored in a cloud server for future use and is displayed on a phone or a pill and can be shared with a cardiologist or a expert for the subsequent stage of intervention.
A Cardiotrack unit, prices round $500 for a patient (aside from tablet or telephone) which, as per Ashim, expenses 4-five times lesser than different transportable ECG machines.
In addition, doctors can also use Uber Diagnostics’ cloud provider on a prepaid version, paying about $30 to $50 to get admission to the service – which also can securely shop patients’ records further to sending their records to different physicians.
The organization claims that its annual sales for the financial 12 months 2015-sixteen amounted to $74K. The crew similarly expects to promote devices well worth $250K inside the modern economic 12 months. Cardiotrack has been adopted across diverse docs globally, with primary chunk of its customers in India, Myanmar, Indonesia, Mexico, and the United States.
Making Rural Healthcare The Utmost Priority
Since Uber Diagnostics offers mainly within the rural healthcare zone, a venture it faces is getting the word out to neighborhood hospitals to make use of the identical. “It’s clean to reach out to human beings inside the towns because hospitals access to scientific journals, meetings, and so forth. In the Tier II or Tier III cities, it's far word-of-mouth,” says Ashim. The startup plans to similarly promote its services thru billboard advertising and other advertising and marketing efforts as well.
Uber Diagnostics faces opposition from a comparable line of merchandise such as a credit-card sized coronary heart screen known as ‘Sanket’ – a portable, cost-efficient ECG gadget. The device can degree a 12-lead ECG offering with as much performance as possible get from an high-priced machine at a health facility.
Another company, Cardiac Design Labs, has additionally constructed a comparable product, that is a low-cost, wearable cardiac display, Mircam. The product aids in preliminary analysis and sends alerts to medical doctors. Working alongside the same lines is Tricog, which has constructed a cloud-primarily based ECG machine, and appointed a team of 20 medical doctors who can sit down at a centrally-placed hub 24×7 in Bengaluru.
International companies along with AliveCor, available in India through the Apollo Group of Hospitals; Kito+, a smartphone case run by San Francisco-based totally organisation Azio, which also works as a health tracker and might even conduct an ECG – also are competitors for the startup.
Cardiotrack is catering to the segregated rural healthcare marketplace which has, until date, no longer visible all and sundry capitalise upon a prime chew of market percentage. This is some thing which units it apart from its Indian competitors. He opines,
“The majority of the Indian population lives out of doors the urban areas, however they have got the poorest of healthcare infrastructure, so our purpose is to offer an answer that addresses their problem.” Additionally, the product has been designed in such a manner that a person with minimum clinical schooling also can perform it.
Healthcare – As Simple As Calling An Uber
Uber Diagnostics is also within the final tiers to launch a affected person app in June/July this 12 months in an effort to act as the motive force for a affected person’s whole health care control. It will provide complete access to patient records and potential to proportion the records with healthcare experts or own family individuals. In addition to that, it will also provide discounts for patients whilst journeying docs who're part of the Cardiotrack community of number one care physicians and experts.
It is likewise making plans to release a simplified version of an digital scientific record (EMR) for rural hospitals, as because of restrained centers, a number of hospitals nevertheless observe the approach of written database for tracking affected person facts. Uber Diagnostics’ EMR will include 8-10 fields inclusive of the patient’s name, age, and date of go to, and can upload these notes onto a printer that would accept to the patient as a prescription. The EMR would also allow for hospitals to save a affected person’s data on a tablet for complete document-keeping.
The startup is also ultimate at the release of a platform in order to allow physicians to speak in actual-time with a consultant, similarly letting them proportion affected person records and initiate an audio/video call with the professional to assist accelerate the intervention manner via integrating synthetic intelligence from Cardiologs, a French enterprise.
This tie-up ambitions to further lessen intervention time by supplying the primary care medical doctor with an instantaneous report at the affected person’s cardiovascular issues based totally at the ECG report generated via Cardiotrack.
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Why do they name themselves Uber, one would possibly ask, to which Ashim replies, “It (Healthcare) must be as easy as calling an Uber cab, now not just for the urban Indian populace, but for every person in the united states, such as the village and rural regions as properly.”
According to a recent record by means of IBEF, the Indian healthcare area is developing at a fifteen% CAGR to reach $158.2 Bn with the aid of 2017. With rural India accounting for over 70% of the populace, there is a giant scope for tech startups to beautify healthcare services. Also, the doctor to affected person ratio is 1:1,500. In such dire conditions, way to era, many healthtech platforms have mushroomed, which can be slowly making the purchaser more privy to their fitness and the steps they could take to song it. In the same route, Uber Diagnostics is addressing a massive hassle: considered one of low-cost healthcare in inaccessible and far flung areas.
Increasing digitisation, even in Tier II and Tier III towns as well as rural India, will add a major fillip to healthtech. There is no doubt that startups like Sanket, Uber Diagnostics, and Tricog are the want of the hour. At the same time, while we talk approximately the extraordinarily disproportionate health practitioner-patient ratio, those startups’ largest assignment and, at the same time, largest differentiator will become teaching the other quit of the spectrum, i.E. The sufferers. Keeping this undertaking to create awareness in thoughts, it stays to be visible how Uber Diagnostics bridges the medical doctor:affected person gap in rural India at the same time as scaling up.