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DkIT Innovators Compete in Vienna

19 December 2022

A group of DkIT students recently pitched their medical device at a European Final.  DkIT students Kyle McQuillan, John Tayag and David Mc Cabe travelled to “iDays” European innovation competition in Vienna to pitch their invention “PhysioLeap”.

In October, DkIT’s dConnect Digital Health Innovation Hub and Connected Health and Wellbeing Cluster staged “iDays”, an innovation competition where teams of students collaborated to find a solution to a health problem. The winners invented “PhysioLeap”, a robotic glove made from flexible material that is programmable from a smart app. One of the team members, David McCabe, lives with arthritis and says

“I was one of the 70% of patients who didn’t complete my physio regime. If I had a comfortable, inconspicuous robotic glove, I would wear it more often and it could be programmed to do my physio for me anywhere, at college, at home, on the bus, literally anywhere. Splints that are currently available are unsightly and awkward, so PhysioLeap gives the patient a comfortable, wearable robotic glove that even looks good!”

Using PhysioLeap’s smart app, Occupational or Physio Therapists can programme a patient’s physio regime into the glove making it more convenient for arthritis patients to complete their physiotherapy plan and rehabilitate their arthritic hands. Therapists can prescribe a physio plan that suits the patient’s mobility, by increasing the speed, repetition and regularity of the physio exercises over time. The app tracks progress as the patient’s mobility improves and even sends notifications to congratulate the patient on complying with their physio regime, encouraging them to keep progressing.

dConnect and Connected Health and Wellbeing Cluster both offer mentoring, training and support to Digital Health startups, and they have been on hand to coach the PhysioLeap team. Sarah Nic Lochlainn of dConnect said,

“local tech companies have been generous with their advice and feedback in helping the PhysioLeap team prepare for the final. Robotics and artificial intelligence are the future of healthcare, and PhysioLeap could revolutionise arthritis care.”

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