Innovation Sprint Blog

Sprint #3: AI-driven Clustering and Adaptation Support for Defining Biomarkers and Behavioral Phenotypes from Real World Data

The predictive capabilities of traditional, vital-based biomarkers on trial outcomes has been under investigation in clinical trials. However, Real World Data is much more than measured vitals: patient-reported outcomes and physical measurements from trial participants’ lifestyles can provide us with extended biomarkers. Can they be useful in predicting future patient reported outcomes or even trial outcomes? Can they be used to model patients or to cluster them into behavioural phenotypes? These are questions addressed under the framework of the Sprint #3 workshop, where we will see how AI can support traditional industries, such as Life Sciences, as well as Health, Wellbeing and Ageing. We will also present commercial applications and R&D projects, discussing the challenges and opportunities through the introduction of AI mechanics.

 

Date and Time: Tuesday 17th December 2019, 9:00 – 15:00

Venue: University of Twente

Agenda: tba

Sprinting in the Summer

This summer has been a very productive period for Innovation Sprint team. After the completion of the Medtech Accelerator, we were on a roll and had some major milestones to meet until the mid-August summer days hit us in the head.

A first milestone was to research the market potentials across the pond and with the great incentive of a planned trip to Montreal, Canada, we set off to organize a couple of meetings to get an idea of how things work and how mature the market is for our solution. We met with the attache from hub.brussels, the invivo, a Life sciences, and health technologies cluster and with an ePRO expert living in Montreal but originally from Belgium. The three meetings got us some great insights on the status of play and we established communication.

In the meantime, back at our Athens lab in July, we welcomed Aristodemos Pnevmatikakis to the team, after a 6month period of collaboration with Innovation Sprint and a long collaboration with our members in previous R&D projects. Aristodemos is very enthusiastic and has a vast experience to direct our R&D department. The team also welcomed Dimitris Zografos a Senior Software engineer with experience in enterprise systems.

So in between the welcomes and the introductions we were facing our second but major milestone for practical and business purposes. At the end of July was our audit for the certification of our Quality System, a process that has been going on for a long time now and that our team had been working hard to understand and meet the standards. The audit was tough, with hands-on tests in the software development and security part and the hard work paid off. We were audited by a team of 3 experts from TUV Austria for ISO 9001, ISO 27001 and GDPR compliance and the outcome was positive. We are expecting to receive the official certificates by the end of August.

Next milestone now is to work on the quality system to see how to optimize it and define the next goals for EU and US (e.g. HIPAA).

Looking forward to a great fall.

Med Tech Accelerator Program completion!!

This year we had the opportunity to take part in the MedTech Accelerator® program for Medtech startups, a cluster of hub.brussels by lifetech.brussels. MedTech Accelerator® has supported 34 projects led by entrepreneurs who are innovating in the medical sector in Brussels.

The 4th edition of MedTech Accelerator® program started in mid-March and ended with a closing pitching ceremony on the 18 June. For 3 months, the program helps the medtechpreneurs and aims to boost the innovation potential of #medtech present in #Brussels by capitalizing on the expertise, infrastructure and ecosystems available to face the challenges of the medical technologies sector with the help of more than 120 experts and guides.

Healthentia was one of the 8 projects that were selected to follow this intensive program of collective workshops and lectures as well as individual coaching sessions with experts.

It was a season of great learning from Pitching basics, design thinking workshops, Product development QA and the new MDR to prototyping, GDPR and IP protection, team management and value-in-business and sales.

Overall it was a great experience and a strategic move for us to take part in this program and register #Healthentia in the region as an eClinical solution to monitor and collect Real World Outcomes and especially due to the large number of hospitals and Pharma that could test and validate our solution.

Have a look at some moments !

Meet our new team members

Innovation Sprint is very happy to welcome the new team members that joined the team the last few months. Konstantinos Tsagkos as the Head of R&D, Aimilia Tsakiri as Data Science Expert and Akis Idrizi as Software Architect & Engineer.

Konstantinos joined Innovation Sprint in December 2018 as Head of our R&D activities bringing to the team an engineering background with expertise in Business Management and Internal Processes. He will be responsible for overlooking and managing our R&D portfolio of projects, looking out on opportunities of exploiting and integrating new technologies and features in the development and improvement of our product solution.

 

Aimilia joined the team also in December 2018 and is responsible for setting up the team of Data Science. She has an engineering background and is a data and technology enthusiast. She brings her experience in analyzing data to draw business-relevant conclusions and in data visualization tools and is responsible for our Data management and standardisation compliance as swell as data analysis and fusion.

 

Akis is our last superhero that joined in January 2019 as a Software Architect and Engineer. He has a a computer science degree and a passion for software engineering, He has knowledge of Ethics in Data Mining and strong skills in .NET Core, NodeJS, PHP  and Service Oriented applications and is responsible for the product development of Innovation Sprint.

The last few months the new members had a great contribution to the vision and product roadmap of innovation sprint with brainstorming meetings and ongoing workshops. We are all looking forward to moving to our new offices in our established Athens Branch and extend further the team with people

Stay tuned

2018 highlights, at the turning of the year.

The year that is about to end has been very constructive for Innovation Sprint. Looking back to the 2018 highlights, our achievements are grouped into those related to continuous and targeted R&D activities, and those related to the development of our commercial product suite. In a nutshell, in 2018 we have transformed our initial products (CloudCare2U and ActionableHealth360) into an R&D sandbox and developed a new product suite (Healthentia) that uses mature practices and concepts from R&D that can be commercialized in the highly regulated environment of healthcare and life sciences that we are active. As an outcome of this transformation, we have reduced our service offering and became a product-oriented company, aiming to adapt to the growth needs. This transformation and all related activities have been achieved thanks to our team that has grown with more people and skill sets.

Let’s see briefly the path towards this transformation. Since our start, we have been exploiting the ambitious outcome of eWALL platform under our product CloudCare2U. The platform is targeting populations seeking a behavioral change, the Active Ageing & Silver Economy societies and any patients groups with chronic diseases that can benefit from CloudCare2U by increasing their independent living, their Quality of Life, while minimizing disease related risks. CloudCare2U is based on a solid study of 50 patients in 4 European countries that have proven its usability and efficacy based on scientifically and clinically accepted protocols.

The strongest point of CloudCare2U, its technological excellence, is at the same time its barrier to entry to the market. Advanced features, such as coaching, audio-visual analysis and many more, encounter challenges that derive from their interaction with the ethical and regulatory framework of the healthcare and life sciences industry, one of the most regulated in the world together with aerospace, aviation and automotive industries. This however, did not create any fear and Instead of making steps back and compromising technology with outcomes, we decided to go more aggressively with the development of additional features, such as AI-reasoning, Big Data Analytics, integration of advanced IoT devices and robots and many more. CloudCare2U and ActionableHealth360 became our official “R&D sandbox“, in which we integrate and validate new features that extend the state of the art. For this purpose, we have issued perpetual R&D licenses to CloudCare2U collaborators and we have signed collaboration agreements and MoUs with key stakeholders, aiming to further develop our platform.

In 2018, Innovation Sprint continued its involvement from 2017 in two R&D projects on AI-based virtual coaching, focusing on embodied conversational agents in a virtual council (Council of Coaches) and rehabilitation based on clinical pathways for certain diseases (vCare). In January 2018, we started the SecureIoT project, an EC project with strong industrial flavor, targeting the challenges of IoT security with AI in the form of Security as a Service paradigm that will be validated in a pilot involving CloudCare2U integrated with QT robot of our partner LuxAI. At the end of year, we started another research initiative for Co-Adaptive Environments for Resilient Ageing citizens, who face particular difficulties in maintaining an active work and life-style (CO-ADAPT). Our role is the development of a key platform component that collects Real World Data and based on machine learning algorithms it supports the services of the CO-ADAPT platform. Further to these projects, we have been awarded 2 more research grants that will start in 2019 (PANACEA and ExACT), the one dealing with platform security and the other one with Systems Medicine. All R&D projects are obviously very relevant to our products CloudCare2U and ActionableHealth360, while they are obviously linked with Healthentia product suite.

Nothing of the above could happen without what people call “human resources”. In Innovation Sprint we don’t like to use this term, as we are not looking for resources, but for talented people with excellence and self-development prospects. Our team has grown and it is expected to further grow in the beginning of 2019. The R&D portfolio is coordinated by Kostas, our R&D director who has a vast PM experience and skills and has the challenge to connect the silos of R&D and commercial product of the company.

Further to the R&D activities, the year 2108 has been characterized by our product development activities, under which we have introduced the Healthentia suite to the market. Healthentia has 3 products targeting: Life Sciences, Data Services and Silver Economy. Healthentia include top novelties coming from our R&D sandbox that can be consumed in the real market. In 2018 we have sprinted to deliver the product branding, our business plan and of course the software itself. We have already been awarded a project, in which Healthentia will be used as an ePRO in a clinical trial from a Top-5 pharmaceutical, while we have a pipeline with more opportunities that we expect to be materialized in the beginning of 2019. These have been achieved through a strong synergy with Arithmos Srl, linked with Innovation Sprint through our partner PMH, who is a promoter of Healthentia. Breaking the entry barriers and entering the life science market was a key milestone for Innovation Sprint, as the company targets its revenues from commercial products to be multiple times the ones from R&D activities. In 2018 we have started contacts with organizations and people from the other side of the Atlantic and soon we are aiming for creation of business opportunities in US and Canada. The Healthentia portfolio is managed by myself and my partners (Alfredo, Hermie, Paolo), together with Konstantina, who joined as a Chief Digital Officer in the company and is in charge of the Healthentia product development. In addition, Aimilia has recently joined as a Data Science director involved in Healthentia, while our research & development team includes Akis, Razvan, Alex and several collaborators.

For 2019 we have lots of plans and foremost to finalize the internal transformation & pivoting to become a product-oriented company that can shake the Life Sciences and Healthcare markets. In the path towards this goal, we have planned an ambitious product roadmap, integrating new features, optimizing our process to meet high standards, as well as to be more extrovert at international level. Our strategy for 2019 will drive the strengthening of sales activities, the development of further synergies and the efficient execution of our plans. Our team will continue to grow with talented people and partners that will be eager sprinting a marathon in the Innovation Sprint family.

Warm wishes for a Happy & Prosperous 2019, with Health, Happiness and Success!

Sofoklis

Sprint #2: The aftermath

Around one year after the Sprint #1 workshop, we have kept our promise to organize in Brussels the second part of the series (Sprint #2), this time focusing on a very crucial topic, namely “Innovation uptake in eHealth with patient-centeredness and gamification. Regulatory challenges and opportunities“.

The workshop was held on 7th November 2018 with the scope to brainstorm the status of the regulatory and ethical scenario in the context of eHealth and expose the state of the art of three EU H2020 eHealth projects (COUCH, GOAL, vCare) discussing the process-to-market implications especially at the light of the Regulatory framework in the clinical research and uptake in the healthcare scenario.

The workshop was opened by Sofoklis Kyriazakos, the CEO of at Innovation Sprint, who welcomed the audience and set the goals of the day. The audience was consisting of speakers and attendees from many countries from diverse sectors, including medical industry, regulation, policy making, research, academia and SMEs. Following the welcome message, a keynote speech was given by Gianlugi Arialdi, CEO of the Brussels Life Sciences Incubator, who presented BLSI structure and activities that embrace eHealth startups in Brussels.

 

The first lecture was given by Ingrid Klingmann, President at the European Forum for Good Clinical Practice in Brussels, with the title “eHealth, Innovation and Patients’ Centredness”. Ingrid stressed the importance of patient centredness in clinical trials, however ensuring Goof Clinical Practice. The following lecture was given by Eric Klasen, Vice President Regulatory Affairs in Medtronic International Trading in Tolochenaz , who talked about “Innovation and (EU) Regulation: the Medical Device case”. Eric has given a focus on the 2020 regulation about medical devices; the challenges and the status of play.

 

After the first 2 lectures, Emilio VandelliManaging Director of Arithmos Srl in Verona, talked about “eHealth Innovation and Clinical Research”. In his presentation he presented the trends in clinical research and how Arithmos and is addressing them.

Following this presentation, Christina KyriakopoulouDirectorate General for Research and Technological Development in the European Commission (Brussels), presented in her talk Horizon Europe the current and future Health related priorities and calls.

Having completed the above lectures and presentations, the workshop attempted to “crash test” the 3 EC projects (workshop co-organizers) about their status and the possible barriers they will have to break with regards to regulations in their exploitation activities. This was moderated by Alfredo Cesario, the Chief Scientific Officer in Innovation Sprint. In this context, Harm op den Akker, Senior Researcher in RRD in Enschede and coordinator of the COUCH project described the novelties and the next steps that involve advanced technologies on argumentation framework to realize mutli-avatar approach for virtual coaching. Furhtermore, Aristodemos Pnevmatikatis, Associate Professor in Athens Information Technology and coordinator of the GOAL project, presented the status and the final activities of the project, which is at the final stage and is executing commercialization activities in the area of gamification for behavioral change of elderlies.

 

Alfredo briefly presented vCare activities, which are focused on clinical pathways for virtual coaching in rehabilitation. Having concluded the 3 project presentations the morning speakers, Ingrid Klingmann, Eric Klasen and Emilio Vandelli, were raising questions to the presenters, in a constructive way for all to understand how critical is to address the regulatory challenges before the start of the exploitation, as this can even be a show stopper in R&D activities.

The last session included 3 speakers – one per project- that presented achievements, as well as best practices and lessons learned in EC projects. Lucia Pannese – CEO of IMAGINARY in Milan talked about “Savings and better QoL: Gamifying Rehab“ with her experience in R&D and commercialization activities in serious games.

Andrew Pomazanskyi, Senior Project Manager in NUROGAMES in Köln, described similar lessons learned with Lucia in his presentation “Problems of exploiting eHealth solutions from R&D projects“.

Finally, Marc Lange, Secretary General of EHTEL, presented the expected transition of vCare from R&D into the practice in “Virtual Rehabilitation Coach: a journey from the proof of concept to routine care“, Marc Lange.

 

The workshop was concluded by Sofoklis Kyriazakos, who explained that the outcomes of the workshop will be summarized in a White Paper and all partners should contribute, aiming to create impact for this critical point of regulation in R&D.

 

Sprint #2 : Innovation uptake in eHealth with patient-centeredness and gamification. Regulatory challenges and opportunities.

Scope of the meeting: Brainstorm the status of the regulatory and ethical scenario in the context of eHealth and expose the state of the art of three EU H2020 eHealth projects discussing the process-to-market implications especially at the light of the Regulatory framework in the clinical research and uptake in the healthcare scenario.

Date and Time:
Wednesday 7 November 2018
09:30 – 17:00

Get Your Free Passes

Venue: 
Innovation Sprint Sprl
at Brussels Life Sciences Incubator (BLSI) – Clos Chapelle-aux-Champs 30 – 1200 Brussels, Belgium

Organising Secretariat:
Alfredo Cesario & Sofoklis Kyriazakos
Innovation Sprint Sprl
info@innovationsprint.eu
+32-2-8806290

Agenda

09:00 – 09:30 Arrival at BLSI – Welcome Coffee

09:30 – 09:45 Welcome address and tune in Sofoklis Kyriazakos, CEO at Innovation Sprint Sprl

09:45 – 10:00 Lecture I: “eHealth, Innovation and Patients’ Centredness”, Ingrid Klingmann – President at the European Forum for Good Clinical Practice, Brussels (BE)

10:00 – 10:15 Lecture II: “Innovation and (EU) Regulation: the Medical Device case”, Eric Klasen – Vice President Regulatory Affairs, Medtronic International Trading, Tolochenaz (CH)

10:15 – 10:30 Pitch I: “eHealth Innovation and Clinical Research”, Emilio Vandelli – Managing Director, Arithmos, Verona (IT)

10:30 – 10:45 Pitch II: “eHealth Innovation and real life Hospital uptake”, Giovanni Arcuri – Chief of Health Technology at Fondazione Policlinico Gemelli IRCCS, Rome (IT)

10:45 – 11:00 Pitch III: “Where Ethics stands in the eHealth uptake process”, Pietro Refolo – Professor of Bioethics at Catholic University, Rome, (IT)

11:00 – 11:30 Coffee Break

11:30 – 12:00 Pitch IV: “Horizon Europe”, Christina Kyriakopoulou – Directorate General for Research and Technological Development – European Commission, Brussels

12:00 – 13:00 Round Table

Moderators: Alfredo Cesario (Innovation Sprint Sprl), Christina Kyriakopoulou (DG Research & Innovation, European Commission, Brussels)

Presenter I (10’) “The H2020 COUCH project: status”, Harm op den Akker, University of Twente (NL)

Presenter II (10’) “The H2020 GOAL project: status”, Aristodemos Pnevmatikatis, Athens Information Technology, Athens (GR)

Presenter III (10′) “The H2020 vCare project: status

Discussants:

Ingrid Klingmann, President at EFGCP
Eric Klasen, VP at Medtronic
Emilio Vandelli, Managing Director at Arithmos
Pietro Refolo, Bioerthicist at UCSC
Giovanni Arcuri, Clinical Engineer at FPG-IRCCS

13:00 – 14:00 Lunch

14:00 – 14:20 “Savings and better QoL: Gamifying Rehab“, Lucia Pannese – CEO IMAGINARY, Milan (IT)

14:20 – 14:40 “Problems of exploiting eHealth solutions from R&D projects“, Andrew Pomazanskyi, NUROGAMES GmbH, Köln (DE)

14:40 – 15:00 – “Virtual Rehabilitation Coach: a journey from the proof of concept to routine care“, Marc Lange, EHTEL (BE)

15:00 – 15:30 Coffee Break

15:30 – 16:00 – “Motivating a healthier lifestyle – the technology viewpoint“, Aristodemos Pnevmatikakis, Athens Information Technology, Athens (GR)

16:00 – 16:30 General Discussion and Wrap Up

Moderator: Christina Kyriakopoulou, DG Research & Innovation, the European Commission

Sprinting in Lifesciences: 10 findings & next steps

It’s been 2 years since Innovation Sprint is incorporated, aiming to shake the healthcare industry. Our starting point was the multidisciplinary skill-set that was brought by the partners, covering ICT, medical, clinical knowledge and the deep understanding of the needs that the healthcare sector has. Despite our people-centric profile, we are a product oriented company and we are acting as a real lean startup. How do we define our lean startup strategy? We are focusing our efforts on the creation of a competitive offering in an uncertain environment with a continuous pivoting and the application of an agile methodology of our MVPs evaluation and strategy refinement.
Last year we reached the first big milestone, which was to start having revenues, clients and building a promising track record. What have we learned during this process? We summarize our 10 strongest findings, in a way to contribute to future entrepreneurs with the best practices so far:

  1. The Healthcare sector is a promising domain that is very regulated;
  2. The products need to be patient-oriented, but offering services directly to patients is a mission impossible;
  3. The Healthcare sector should be addressed as a self-sustained ecosystem, where you need to satisfy needs of all stakeholders (patients, physicians, health system, payers, etc);
  4. Technologies are great, but still patients and traditional healthcare service-providers are very reluctant to use them;
  5. User engagement and technology acceptance should be the starting point of all product development and participatory design is a must;
  6. Business Model Innovation is mandatory to break the entry barriers and cross the chasm;
  7. The lifecycle of a sale is a very long and needs patience and an agile behavior to make it happen;
  8. The competition is very tough, therefore, proper attention is required to balance between synergies and identifying niche markets;
  9. Once you go for a pilot, you really have 1 shot;
  10. Offering should focus primarily on one thing: “Provide a better health”.

 

Some of the above findings were reached as a natural evolution of Innovation Sprint; some others were painful for us to understand. Having reached this point, we are eager to move forward towards our second big milestone, which is to scale by offering an integrated solution capable of addressing several niche markets.

We will keep you updated with our findings in this second part of our journey!

Meet our new team member Konstantina

Innovation Sprint is very happy to welcome the new member of the team, Konstantina Kostopoulou as Chief Digital Officer. Konstantina has expertise in UX & UI, Digital Marketing and Online Sales combined with skills in leadership, strategy and creative problem solving.

She has a Master’s in Architecture from Glasgow University, UK and a MSc from Columbia University, NY. Worked as an Architect and later as a PM in large Real Estate Developments. While working, she received an MBA from the National Technical University of Athens in Technoeconomics merging her creative background with Digital Technologies and Business Management. Since 2011 she works in the Online space, building Digital Experiences as the Creative and Marketing Director and eCommerce Consultant at Converge ICT.

Konstantina is a Creative Technologist in nature and loving filling the gaps between customers, design, product, and technology. As the CDO of Innovation Sprint she will be responsible for the Development of iSprint’s Suite of Products in the disrupting digital health landscapes contributing in the digital transformation vision of the company and Team.

Welcome on-board Konstantina and get ready to sprint a marathon!!

News digest – November 2017

ActionableHealth360 – Technologies and practices for Big Data analytics and data monetization

Innovation Sprint is presenting these days a new release of ActionableHealth360 toolkit that supports the migration of data marts into a private data cloud, and allows you to maximize your data through the marketplace infrastructure.ActionableHealth360 realizes a digital transformation, while addressing the challenges of data processing and sharing, healthcare organizations are confronted with every day. This toolkit improves this way, healthcare quality, effectiveness and affordability, reducing costs by optimizing processes and providing actionable Big Data analytics for efficient decision making.It does so through the implementation of a private data cloud based on the definition of the strategy, the identification of data sources, the analysis and definition of processes, and the management and migration of data and data marts from data-warehouses to a private cloud infrastructure. The latter, will support advanced reporting and business insights, and provide datasets needed to offer SaaS solutions in the form of both Web and Mobile apps.For what concerns monetization strategies, ActionableHealth360 allows data providers (e.g. pharmaceutical companies) to securely upload their data through a flexible API. At the same time, consultants and agencies can use easy tools and develop dynamic reports that exploit rich datasets and make them available for subscriptions. Further relevant stakeholders in the market, are data consumers – including Healthcare providers, Policy makers, Insurance companies, NHS, and so forth –, who would pay a monthly subscription for basic information, and an additional fee to use the report generators. Obviously, the income from subscribers is split among the data providers and developers based on a meritocracy model. The vision of ActionableHealth360 marketplace is to contribute to a data-rich healthcare future, enabling medical care to be proactive rather than reactive, and reward data providers for their contribution.At Innovation Sprint, we believe that ActionableHealth360 is an invaluable asset for data-driven organizations that aim to offer better healthcare services, enhanced therapies through innovative technologies, digital disruption, and opportunities for increased revenues.If you are interested in a demonstration of the private data cloud features, and/or own open-data on healthcare and want to be part of the ActionableHealth360 marketplace, please do not hesitate to contact ah360@innovationsprint.eu.

 

Sharing the most disruptive in eHealth

After joining the kickoff of the European funded project vCare – developing a tool to accompany patients in rehabilitation at home, avoiding cure disruption – on 6th and 7th of September in Dresden, and organizing our September workshop “Shaking up the eHealth Industry in the New Digital Era” in Brussels – where we met representatives of the European Commission, of universities around Europe, from Greece to Denmark, passing by research institutes like Roessingh Research and Development (NL), and National Belgian bodies such as Lifetech.Brussels (find the content of the workshop at: https://innovationsprint.eu/sprint-1-shaking-up-the-ehealth-industry-in-the-new-digital-era/) -, our team did not stop looking and creating occasions to meet, share and improve.

Between 19th and 24th of October, we were in Athens, where innovators met at the eHealth Forum, a conference on digital health that saw the participation of researchers, industrial stakeholders, professionals of the sector, from all over Europe.

And on 2nd and 3rd of November, we met our partners in Enschede (NL) to launch the European funded project Council of Coaches, which will see for the coming three years, professionals and researchers from several countries, pursuing the development of a tool for personalized assistance to conduct a healthy life and aging healthily.Suitcase ready, next stop: Budapest!

 

Meet Innovation Sprint Founders at the ICT Proposers’ Day

As always, the team of Innovation Sprint is present where ideas, people, innovators meet up to share, learn, grow. On the 9th and 10th of November in Budapest, Hungary, it will be the two founders, Sofoklis Kyriazakos and Alfredo Cesario , to join a round of ICT researchers, innovators, SMEs, government actors and industrial stakeholders at the ICT Proposers’ Day.The networking occasion will particularly focus on the Horizon2020 Work Programme for 2018-20, on the fields of Information & Communication Technologies and Future and Emerging Technologies (FET).With its main Policies highlighting the relevance of topics such as research and innovation for health, the use of technologies for healthy aging, and digital solutions for health, as tools to cope with the demographic trends of the older and older European Continent, this event represents a thrilling occasion for Innovation Sprint, ready to launch its first digital solution for ehealth – CloudCare2U.The event will provide the participants with information on how to submit a proposal to answer a Horizon2020 call, the SME instrument, IP rights, and trends for the period after 2020. It will give the opportunity to interact with subjects active in the same field and to find project partners, also through an online platform.Sofoklis Kyriazakos and Alfredo Cesario will be there to meet you and talk innovation.

 

Staying active: a challenge for people as well as for eHealth apps

Staying active is a common suggestion doctors would give us all. Recently this concern has expanded its range to involve physical, mental, and also digital activity. Indeed, the Spanish Institute of Statistics published a study on the use of mobile apps, underlining figures and consequences on public health and the field of eHealth and mHealth.One first fact, is that about 90% of surfers uses a mobile device to move around the web; the second fact, is that while there are more than 165.000 mobile health related apps, most of them seem to rest unused. Indeed, the difference between the amount of existing apps and that of active ones, is appalling: 36 cover half of the total of apps in use.One major problem, seems to be the lack of an organic communication strategy so to inform users on how such apps could help them improving their life style and health. With this regard, a first step has been taken with the creation of an app that includes a list of all apps that have been accredited by the Agency of Sanitary Health on the basis of 4 criteria: quality of information, design, respect for privacy and confidentiality, and offered services (source: Consalud.es).The Spanish case should serve as input for more reflexions, since this represents a major issue for public health and eHealth. Failing to consider and fill the gap between technology and services, on the one side, and the people, on the other side, would indeed make the first useless. We need learn and speak the language of the patients and people who do not “speak technology”, and “see” health as they “see” it, and build the golden bridge between needs and digital solutions.

 

Meet Gabriella @ Innovation Sprint

At the end of last summer, Innovation Sprint saw the family growing with Gabriella Russo joining the team as Project Officer. Gabriella is a sociologist of Conflict and Security who focused on the use of communication and media in critical scenarios. She mixes a background of studies in economics and international relations, and experience in advocacy and project management, with a passion for science and technology that passed from pervading her spare time, to being her field of work.Gabriella made research on human security, a newly spread concept dear to the United Nations and to Conflict and Security schools, which underlines the relevance of people’s sense of confidence and safety in diverse dimensions of people lives – e.g. food security, school security, economic security, health security, and so forth – in order to have real security, and stabilize a context.

 

Why eHealth then?

I do not consider this an extreme change of field. At Innovation Sprint we are developing digital products that aim at offering eHealth solutions based on personal specific data, so to be more effective. Such digital solutions can help guarantee a better health for anybody, decreasing health related costs as well. In other words, we are working for health security! Other similarities between conflict and security on the one hand, and technology and science on the other hand, can be found in their pivoting on the constant stimuli to human potentials, which both critical conditions and innovation bring to mankind. Most probably, it is such kind of challenges that sparks my interest in such fields and makes me perceive them so connected. Last but not the least, working in the medical and technological fields has always been my dream, and going to work eager to discover, develop, and find out what the new day brings me, makes production and growth sure, and, why not, cheerful nerd jokes too.

What is your contribution in this field?

As a matter of facts, I am using all my background in communication in complex scenarios, advocacy, and project management. Indeed, I researched factors impacting on people’s perceptions and choices, based on their information. And currently, I am supporting the implementation of a few projects and the definition of a communication strategy that would bridge the gap between people on one side, and technology and digital services on the other side. Many things are obvious for tech and med professionals and nerds, but the truth is that if we want to deliver services to any person, regardless of type and level of education (tech or not), economic status, and so forth, we need focus on those human and environmental factors impacting on perceptions and communication, in order to put ourselves in “the patients/users shoe” speak their language, and understand their feedback. So to activate a virtuous circle where we understand their point of view and needs, improve our services, and make us understood, make eHealth understood. For what is not understood, is not trusted. And this is just the beginning.

Why a startup?

A startup represents a Pandora’s vase, but of opportunities! Opportunity to learn an incredible number of things, of all sort. Opportunity to learn through constant work “elbow to elbow” with great professionals and humans. Mentors. Opportunity to bring your contribution and see it considered, in other words, to help shape something and be all but just a number in an employee list. They asked me if I were afraid of such a career switch (leaving missions in the jungle and similar), and of working in a startup, where everything needs be managed from scratch. A bit yes. But it is the things that scary us, that challenge us, to provide us with chances for improvement, and I have never enough with what I know and can (I started to run long distances because I wanted to beat myself!). Besides, I work with visionary creative people, who allow and support my visionary insanity. So speaking of health, in my opinion doctors should prescribe to everybody an experience in a startup! Come and visit us in our offices located in a stimulating research park in Brussels, or meet us in the many conferences and meeting we are joining around Europe.

Quick news

  • Our September guests’ work in eHealth: The findings and the way forward.
  • Job openings: we are hiring software developers. Click here to find out more.
  • Looking for an internship in software development? We offer internships from January 2018, for more info, contact us at: info@innovationsprint.eu