Helyxon Healthcare Solutions has recently launched a compact fever monitoring system. M Neelam Kachhap speakes to Vijai Shankar Raja, CEO, Helyxon Healthcare Solutions to find out about the technology and wearable devices market in India
What is the market for wearable devices in India?
Wearable devices market in India is in its stone age right now. The market can be categorised into three segments, Healthcare, wellness and fitness. The market size touched Rs 25 crores in 2014. The market is expected to jump multifold year-on-year, to a few hundred crores in 2015 and grow to more than Rs 1,000 crores in 2016.
How are smart sensors changing the way healthcare is delivered in India?
Smart sensors are those which can communicate the readings directly to the distant database over wireless network. That way the readings are directly computable and hence more reliable.
Advent of nanotechnology and ICT have created a new field called Internet of Things (IoT). These smart sensors are going to measure and continuously monitor various parameters in our body, be it chemical, electrical, temperature, etc. All these can be measured and interpreted to predict certain forthcoming changes in the health status of the patient.
Decades of investment negligence in India by policymakers have left Indian healthcare scenario just a little better than the African countries. Even our neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka and Bangladesh have better healthcare indices.
Building the infrastructure to take healthcare to the next level through conventional way is time consuming and going to need a huge investment. If we are smart, we can use smart devices to instantly scale up the system.
The new age IoT devices have the ability to work with smartphones. People have smartphones in their hand. Network has become pervasive. There is no need for a common man to learn afresh to use a new device. Everyone has a smartphone which he/she knows how to use and they are doing it already.
While doctors are crowded in urban areas, patients are waiting eternally in the rural for a doctor’s visit. There is a clear failure of infrastructure here. We need the right platform to bridge this gap. We need right solutions for both patient and doctor to measure the parameters anywhere, anytime.
Using Internet, telemedicine is able to provide the remote doctor consultations for the patient who live in remote northeast state in hilly areas. Healthcare solutions are being developed for remote monitoring of the patient as simple as core body temperature to very complicated situation like diagnosing/doing surgery remotely using robots.
How is your product different from the existing temperature monitors available in India?
Today, there are hundreds of models of thermometer available in the market, but all measure the body temperature in that instant like capturing an act using a still camera. But what we really need is continuous monitoring like a video camera so that we don’t miss the events happening in between. This unique solution will help baby to sleep better, mothers to shed their anxiety, doctors get to see the fever trend, hospitals can bring in better efficiency of nurse usage, to name a few.
This product will replace all the mercury thermometers and digital thermometers. Every household and hospital beds will eventually need a Fever Watch instead of a regular thermometer.
What are the price differentiators as compared to other products available?
There are mercury thermometers, digital thermometers, IR thermometers, continuous patient monitoring device and as such to measure the body temperature.
The existing continuous monitoring devices are usable only by trained professionals and it costs not less than Rs 40,000 to Rs 50,000. Our product costs just Rs 4,999.
The IR thermometer which displays only instant temperature costs between Rs 2,000 to Rs 4,000 which is also not very accurate as many times it measures only the skin temperature and not the body temperature, which is very much influenced by the environmental conditions. Other low cost thermometers cost few hundred rupees which are banned to be used as they use mercury which is harmful to use.
What are your plans for this product in the next financial year?
Currently, we are focussed on establishing the business in Chennai, then in other major cities. Before the fiscal year end we want to be available across the country. Next year we will be coming out with several other products which will make quality healthcare delivery affordable for anyone, anytime and anywhere.
Could you talk about your product pipeline?
Our future products will find place in the pockets of each individual, in each household and at every street corner/ industry/ office/ villages. We will be using various technologies to make quality healthcare delivery affordable and reachable to the last citizen in the country.