Best of both worlds:
building the AsthmaCompass
Taco Kind studied electrical engineering (TU Delft), medicine (LUMC) and received a PhD in the medical field (VUmc). At HealthInc, he works on the development of AsthmaCompass with his startup SentoMed.
“I came up with this idea because of my girlfriend. She has asthma and uses inhalation medication, but often complained about the lack of a dose counter on the medication that forced her to calculate when the medication would be finished. I wanted to do something about it.”
“A big problem with asthma is the low level of adherence. People can forget to take their medication, aren’t sure what the effect is, don’t get feedback why it’s important or don’t understand their treatment regime. There are many means available to improve asthma management, but if you want to improve adherence, you need behavioral change.
To achieve this, patients should be empowered by provision of a personalized asthma action plan, reinforced with education and regular feedback. What is unique about our product is that we integrate all these components to create an effective and personalized system for self-management.”
Linking patients to practitioners
“At the moment we’re still working on a prototype. The idea is that the system will be implemented by hospitals. The patient visits the practitioner, who invites him or her to use our app. This app will be connected to multiple devices such as a smart inhaler or spirometer. The patient can also use it to check information about air pollution, concentration of pollen etc.
Patient data can be accessed by the practitioner via a portal to check the condition of the patient at any time – which is much more often than during periodic consultations. If intervention is needed, the practitioner can reach out to the patient easily by using the app or just a phone call.”
Better health at lower costs
“I feel it’s really important that our company truly contributes to better healthcare and better care for asthma patients. I started this in February this year, but my problem was that I had to do everything myself. At some point, that just doesn’t work anymore. I went looking for people who could support me. That’s how I came across AHTI, that runs the HealthInc program.
I would love to start a pilot project. To do that, we need to continue working on the prototype. I’m already in touch with three hospitals. The goal is to create something that lowers the costs and improves the quality of care. HealthInc helps me to figure out what could be the best way to make this a healthy business.”
“After my graduation in electrical engineering, I started to study medicine. I always wanted to become a medical specialist, until I realized – at the end of my studies – that I really like to build products. By working on AsthmaCompass I have the best of both worlds. So my girlfriend is now waiting for me to finish the application, haha!”