As the winter slowly loses its grip on northern Finland and gives way to the warmer seasons, it’s yet again time to catch our blog up to speed and look back at some of the highlights of our recent months.

Successful pilot in elderly care – case study now available

Starting in October 2021, we had a chance to pilot our mobile solution Vitacam Care at an assisted living facility in Taivalkoski, northern Finland. The pilot was organized as part of the POPsote-project, a comprehensive development and innovation initiative to improve healthcare services across North Ostrobothnia region. In our case, the project brought together parties such as Oulu University and the Äly-TKI project, the municipality of Taivalkoski and Oulu WelfareLab to collaborate on what we now refer to as the Kataja pilot.

Asumispalveluyksikkö Kataja is a residential care facility housing 25 elderly persons, cared for by 14 carers and one trained on-shift nurse. Many of the residents suffer from memory-related illnesses as well as conditions such as cardiovascular disease and hypertension. Over the course of a year, approximately a fourth of the residents are hospitalised or need to visit the emergency department. During the pilot period, Katja staff was provided with our smartphone application with the goal of testing our camera-based measurements on the elderly population.

In total, over 250 individual measurements of both respiratory rate and heart rate were taken during the pilot period. Based on the measurements, three interventions were made, including one hospitalisation and multiple changes to medication. The findings support the idea that introducing more frequent, easy to use forms of vital signs measurements to elderly care provides real value to both the staff and the residents. The pilot also gave us a chance to gather significant performance data for further development purposes, and we are very grateful for the contributions of Katja personnel and our other collaboration partners.

For a more comprehensive breakdown on the pilot and the conclusions drawn, read the case study on the topic below:

Accelerating UK market entry through Propel@YH

In early November, Vitacam was announced as one of ten innovations selected for Propel@YH, the accelerator programme run by Yorkshire & Humber Academic Health Science Network (YHAHSN) with the support of their partners such as Pfizer, Thrive by design, University of Leeds, Hill Dickinson and Barclays Eagle Labs. The YHAHSN plays a crucial role in adopting and spreading digital innovations, which match the needs of NHS organisations in its region. Its accelerator is designed to help suppliers engage more effectively with the NHS, which is itself in the process of digital transformation and transitioning into Integrated Care Systems.

Over the course of the 6-month programme, we were able to refine our value proposition further and develop a concrete plan for market entry, including compliance with DTAC and evidence generation. There were also opportunities to meet with key stakeholders and decision makers across the NHS, both in the regional and national level.

Propel@YH gives a solid launchpad as we enter the UK!

Other recent activity and things to look out for

  • As the world opens up in the wake of Omicron, we had the pleasure to participate in Digital Health Rewired in London and Bridging the Gap in Leeds, both in March 2022. We look forward to be at HIMSS in Helsinki in June 14-16, 2022.
  • Evidence is important for any digital health company. We worked with Healthwave Hub In Cornwall on a systematic review of respiratory rate as a predictor for severe COVID-19, using oxygen saturation as a comparator. Respiratory rate is a much underused vital sign and the evidence suggests it can be beneficial for monitoring. The resulting white paper will be published soon.
  • We are also featured in a newly released The Future Hospitals from Finland brochure, published by Business Finland. Read the announcement here!