August 31 2016By Guest
Thanks to Jonnie Temple from 2015 NT100 venture PulseGuard for writing this guest blog.
So the NT100 is back again for 2016. There are some amazing technological breakthroughs happening at the moment, and a lot of them are birthed from regular people, but with one important aspect. They want to change the world for the better. As an employee at Adris Technologies Ltd and friend of the Perry family, I’ve witnessed this first hand. What started as a father’s love for his son, has transformed into a passion for helping others in desperate situations, so we were thrilled our seizure monitoring system, PulseGuard, was recognised in the 2015 NT100.
In the field of assistive technology, not a lot has changed over the past couple of decades, in the way patients and epilepsy sufferers are monitored. That’s where PulseGuard comes in. Through scientific research, it was determined that 93% of seizures in epilepsy affect the heart-rate. In fact, this change in heart-rate is the first detectable symptom in a seizure. PulseGuard is a simple, wireless system that monitors the heart, and alerts if the heart rate rises above, or falls below the custom set parameters. Using a Bluetooth wrist sensor connected to the PulseGuard software installed on a tablet, we offer epilepsy sufferers a technologically up-to-date and non-intruding piece of equipment. With our own server, we can remotely repair any problems that may arise with the software and users can keep PulseGuard up to date as ever improving software is released.
Today, PulseGuard is being used all over the UK, and we have now been asked to supply to countries like the USA, and Australia. PulseGuard, having started as a personal home monitor, is now being used in care-homes around the country. After the decision to release PulseGuard to the public, it has always been a deep desire of the creators to see the system incorporated into the professional care-home market, with the potential to massively improve upon the way seizure monitoring and care is given. With grant-funding from Nominet Trust, we have been able to make this a reality. PulseGuard is now being used in care-homes to give instant response to emergency situations, allowing for a far more efficient service to patients.
Developing a potentially lifesaving product like PulseGuard comes with its challenges. You want it to be perfect, and being used in life or death situations, it has to be up to standard. There is a temptation to rush ahead with development, and with all the ideas pouring out from the Founder, Adrian Perry, we need to reign it in and focus on getting PulseGuard just right. But, the ideas are there and they certainly are going to take PulseGuard to the next level. Making the decision for Adris Technologies to be a not-for-profit organization also brings financial challenges, but certainly keeps the company rooted in its cause.
We can safely say that we wouldn’t be where we are without our inclusion in the 2015 NT100. It really helped put us on the map and in the sight of the health industry. Where people previously would write us off as a ‘nothing’ company, the NT100 status completely changed the way people viewed PulseGuard. It essentially gave us the ammunition to compete with the established companies in the industry. The NT100 has opened doors for us that would never have been opened otherwise. And I’m sure that other ‘tech for good’ companies have experienced the same as us, and deservedly so. Technology has shaped our world, and continues to do so. People who want to harness the power of technology and use it for the good of the human race should be championed. It is ever evolving, always moving forward, and we are only starting to scratch the surface of how we can use it. It’s important to keep being reminded of those people trying to make a difference to other people’s lives, using the power of technology.
There are a lot of amazing initiatives happening, but those exciting me are the ones having an impact on those living in poverty. Those that are able to radically change people’s lives in poorer countries through agriculture and general lifestyle. Not just the poorer countries, but poverty and homeless here in the UK as well. These are the projects that are starting out of love and from the heart. It would be great to see more of these initiatives highlighted in the 2016 NT100. But I am excited to see any company that is using tech in areas not thought of before; using and stretching tech to the very edges of its potential.
Nominations for the 2016 NT100 are open until 30th September, nominate here.