The German-based smedo GmbH has today announced it has closed its seed round bagging €1.66M. This investment supports the startup’s efforts to advance the development of a new medical system that enables hospitals and nursing homes to measure vital signs through a contactless solution.
The Seed round was supported by Vienna’s APEX Ventures in partnership with Brandenburg Kapital, a subsidiary of Investitionsbank des Landes Brandenburg.
The need for contactless and non-intrusive medtech
Monitoring devices can be broadly categorized into two types, wearable & contactless. While wearable sensors are more widely used currently, contactless ones have been emerging with distinct advantages over wearable ones. Generally, they are less intrusive and offer more comfort.
This is especially important for the physically compromised and the elderly who may lack the ability to wear multiple sensors for a long time. Additionally, they help reduce the risks of infection for doctors and health care workers as contact is minimised. “Currently, patients in the intensive care unit are monitored with the help of complex ECG devices. These are costly and personnel-intensive to use and therefore not suitable for a normal ward,” remarked Thomas Grellner, the founder and CEO of smedo GmbH.
Patient monitoring technologies are increasingly moving away from wearable sensors towards the use of video, sound, radar, and other contactless methods in conjunction with AI and ML. Brandenburg Kapital’s investment manager Nam Nguyen commented, “In our opinion, smedo offers the best solution to solve one of the biggest problems in the healthcare system and in nursing care through a tool for contact-free vital data measurement in real-time, which will relieve medical staff in their daily work.”
Monitoring vital patient data with smedo’s tech
The startup employs an innovative system which seamlessly monitors vital cardiac signs such as heartbeat and breathing without body-worn sensors. The smedo sensor measures skin micro-vibrations to determine a patient’s heartbeat, HRV, HeartSound, respiration rate and blood pressure. The device works from of up to 7meters through clothing, in the dark and on moving targets. The result is maximum freedom and comfort for personnel and patients and without compromising accurate vital data. Smedo supervises defined areas and monitors the biometrics with the capability of triggering acoustic/ digital alarms as well as insightful reports whenever/ wherever needed.
Founded in 2019 by Thomas Grellner, smedo and its tech makes it possible to continuously monitor patients’ vital data without manual intervention or the set up of a system. Diagnostic approaches are also being pursued, which in the future should enable the early detection of fatal cardiac events such as heart attacks. Thomas further added, “The early detection and prevention of life-critical events not only in hospitals and nursing homes but also in the field of baby monitoring, for example, represents the greatest motivation for us to bring our technology to exciting markets.”
Nam Nguyen added, “The unique selling point of smedo here is the ability to precisely record heart sounds, which enables an exact allocation of the measurement signals and thus also a biometric procedure. We are proud to welcome smedo to our portfolio and to tackle further the development together.”