Tamil Nadu

IIT-M, healthcare start-up develop device to monitor patients

The self-contained portable wireless device can be clipped on to a patient’s finger and data streamed to a mobile phone or central monitoring system.

The self-contained portable wireless device can be clipped on to a patient’s finger and data streamed to a mobile phone or central monitoring system.  

A device to remotely monitor the vital signs of patients, including those infected by COVID-19, has been deployed in some hospitals in Chennai.

The device, developed by the Healthcare Innovation Centre of the Indian Institute of Technology-Madras and Helyxon, a healthcare start-up in the institute’s research park, can monitor temperature, oxygen saturation, respiratory rate and heart rate.

According to the institute, the device is being used on 2,000 patients in public and private hospitals and homes too. Around 5,000 more are in the pipeline.

The start-up is scaling up to meet the demand for the device, which costs between ₹2,500 and ₹10,000, depending on the configuration and parameters.

The self-contained portable wireless device can be clipped on to a patient’s finger, and data streamed to a mobile phone or central monitoring system.

The temperature is measured at the armpit and blood oxygen level and other parameters at the finger tip. The reusable device can be used for over a year for patient management for other conditions as well.

Institute faculty and head of Healthcare Technology Innovation Centre (HTIC) Mohanasankar Sivaprakasam said it was a learning experience for the team. “The key technical challenge is to engineer a device that meets the standards of a medical patient monitor and yet costs one-tenth and can easily be fitted and used without training,” he said.

Technology validated

The core technology was validated by a year-long multi-centric study at various Chennai-based medical institutions for accuracy and performance with reference to current standards. Hospitals found it advantageous to use the device specifically during COVID-19 as it reduced close contact with patients for doctors and nurses, and saved significantly the expense on PPE and monitoring equipment.

Helyxon founder Vijai Shankar Raja said the device was developed based on feedback from doctors and hospital managements.

Non-governmental organisations have approached the start-up to procure the device for Stanley Medical College Hospital, the Institute of Child Health and the Institute of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

The solution is scalable to hundreds of patients monitored by a hospital or a central authority. The software platform seamlessly issues alert escalations for patient’s parameters and can be used for online consultation with doctors and hospitals, the developers of the device have said.

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Printable version | Sep 18, 2020 1:08:31 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/iit-m-healthcare-start-up-develop-device-to-monitor-patients/article32263487.ece

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