A STYRIAN STARTUP COMPANY
Did you know that about 65% of the people living in nursing homes suffer from fecal incontinence (FI)?
It means a person cannot control bowel movement anymore (involuntary loss of bowel contents) and must wear an incontinent product/absorbent brief. During the daytime the affected people can call the nursing staff by themselves if the product needs to be changed. Calling for help in this special case is understandably connected with a sense of shame and embarrassment - especially if the "inquiry" will not be handled in a discreet way.
And how does the situation look during the nighttime? A sleeping person won't call for help - therefore nursing homes established checking routines for the nursing staff. It means that the status gets checked up to twice every night - the affected person wakes up, regardless of whether the product needs to be changed or not. The life quality suffers drastically - imagine not to be able anymore to sleep the night through.
And what if the checking routines fail and a dirty product doesn't get changed all night long? Then health risks occur. A dirty product increases the risks of skin diseases and infections to a great extent. We try to change baby diapers as soon as possible - the same credo needs to apply for people in need of care as well.
And let's not forget the challenges the nursing staff faces every day: a growing lack of personnel connected with the requirement to do more and more tasks (in the same time - with fewer personnel) leads to the need to work as efficient as possible. "Dead mileage" and wasted time in the case of clean incontinent products - the clear opposite of efficiency.
There are three main pains concerning the handling of FI-affected people in nursing homes:
Wearing an incontinent product is associated with a sense of shame, asking someone for help reinforces that feeling in addition. Everyone would like to sleep through, this is not possible with the current routines.
The incontinent product needs to be changed as soon as possible - otherwise the risks of skin diseases and infections are increased.
Dead mileage due to outdated checking routines presents a problem in terms of working efficiency.
Our device makes checking routines obsolete. It monitors the state of the incontinent product/absorbent brief from the outside - it's attached to the surface like a plaster, therefore it doesn't get dirty or wet. It stays clean and it's reusable - just attach it to the new incontinent product/absorbent brief and press the reset button. It's that simple.
In the case of bowel movement the device automatically sends a notification to a smart phone, a tablet, a smart watch or an other backend chosen by the customers. No unnecessary functions and no fancy gadgets - it focusses on the specific needs of the affected people and the nursing staff. In other words: our solution creates a sustainable benefit.
Simon - Elmar - Werner - Stefan - Manuel
Last year different decisions led to what we usually call the "classical birth of a StartUp project". Inspired by the baby of a good friend and his long experience in the area of the elderly care Simon (background: law) had the idea to invent a sensor system - a smart device which informs parents or caregivers if diapers need to be changed. Nowadays everything must be smart - your watch - your TV - your glasses. You can monitor every information and every more or less useful data on your mobile phone - your daily steps, calories and your work out statistics...why not the state of a diaper as well?
Something with a measurable added value - something that creates a benefit and really helps people in a mostly taboo area.
Elmar (background: law, MBA), one of Simons best friends, was fast on fire for the idea and together they started with interviewing with nursing homes, health experts and caregivers to check the specific needs of the affected people and the nursing staff. All the opinions and all the professional input was quickly combined to a loose vision of the gain: a sensor-device connected to a smart backend.
Werner, a friend with an expertise in hardware/software-development (MSc), became the third member of the team and could use his professional experience with sensoric systems and low power connectivity to build a bridge between the general idea of the functionality and the specific technical implementation.
The result of the effort of the last months are the attraction of attention for the project, the successful participation in several StartUp-accelerator programs (e.g. Gründungsgarage, Science Park Graz, HVLab by General Electric/Budapest) and particularly the working prototype ready for the testing phase under hard conditions in various nursing homes in Styria.
Our biggest success so far was in July 2019: our project convinced a jury of experts - we will be incubated by Science Park Graz until the end of 2020.
Every idea needs to grow...blossoms already visible
We'd like to hear from you!
Tel: +43(0)6641464633 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Stremayrgasse 16, Science Park Graz, 8020 Graz, Austria
Our team was completed in the past months by Stefan (innovation managment), our team-internal business angel and networker with many years of start-up experience and Manuel (business managment), an expert in business agendas and financing.
DigniSens wird im akademischen Gründerzentrum Science Park Graz GmbH betreut und im Rahmen des AplusB Scale-up Programms gefördert.
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