About this project
The problem we solve: Heart Failure (HF) affects 5.1 million Americans, and many HF patients are admitted, and readmitted, to hospitals due to fluid accumulating in their bodies. These symptoms are primarily controlled by diuretics, that eliminate fluid from the body. At times, when patients are placed on these medications, it might not be at the correct dose, leading to fluid build up, or worse. And when patients may only follow up with their physicians at long intervals, it can be difficult to adequately monitor diuretic dosages, and some HF patients may end up in the hospital, or even die, due to uncontrolled symptoms. In 2012, for Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) patients, HF was the largest contributor toward 30-day hospital readmissions, with 55% of total readmissions. HF accounts for 11 million physicians visits per year and results in more hospital admissions than all forms of cancer combined. And for Medicare beneficiaries, HF contributes toward 34% of total Medicare spending.
About our solution: We treat Heart Failure (HF) patients by pairing machine-learning software with existing hardware to help physicians administer individualized diuretic-dosing instructions at low cost. We accomplish this task by providing algorithmically-defined and physician-verified changes to dosages of diuretics, and learning from our patients along the way. This learning then enables us to determine optimized modes of personal management for our patients.
Currently we are utilizing Withings smart scales to record physiological measurements of HF patients. Our algorithm will help us define which cutoff values should be used to change a diuretic dosage, on an individualized basis. This data is fed to our software, allowing a physician to access it through a portal and adjust diuretic dosages as necessary, with our software providing a data-driven suggestion. After physician verification, the software alerts the patient of the correct dosage over his/her mobile device. Progress to date: We have a conditional acceptance from PROPEL, a program that aims to increase the number and success rates of life sciences companies in Illinois, and is a subsidiary of the iBIO Institute. We recently placed in the finals of the UIC Startup Competition, finishing in the top 9 of 55 competitors, and won a $500 prize. We have developed the initial version of our software, a physician portal that displays updated patient's physiological measurements and allows physicians to make changes to diuretic dosages, and then send that information back to patients via SMS. We are also actively collecting information from HF patients for our observational study. This is to understand individual physiologic profiles of Heart Failure (HF) patients and how certain diuretic dosages impact the water content of their bodies, obtaining the data necessary to create an accurate algorithm to properly suggest diuretic dosages to physicians. We are actively interviewing software engineering candidates.
About Our Team
Dr. Chris Duff, MD, BS Unspecified , Practicing Physician Location: Illinois Medical school: University of Illinois: Chicago Bio: With years of medical training and two years of direct health care experience as a patient care coordinator prior to medical school, I am a highly motivated, self-starting entrepreneur with a propensity for discovering innovative solutions to complex problems. I just completed medical school at the University of Illinois: Chicago (UIC), and recently spent a semester as a graduate assistant at the Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies providing counsel to local entrepreneurs.
Title: Entrepreneur LinkedIn:https://www.linkedin.com/in/chris-duff-m-d-87944427
About Team Members
Medical Student, BS Biography: A medical student at Chicago Medical School holding research fellowships at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine: Solomon H. Snyder Department of Neuroscience, and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. This year, Syed was named an Innovation & Entrepreneurship Research Scholar for TEDMED. Syed is also an avid inventor and entrepreneur focused on developing innovative and simple solutions to health care’s largest problems.
About Our Company
Physiologic Technology Inc. Location: Niles, Illinois Product stage: proto Sales: Working on it Employees: 1-2
How We Help Patients
In medical school, I remember a patient, we'll call her 'Betty,' who was recently discharged from the hospital for Heart Failure (HF), only to end up back in the ER 2 weeks later because her symptoms returned. And she said ‘Doc, I’ve been taking my meds as prescribed, what’s going on?’ And my explanation didn't resolve any of her frustration about her condition.
Many HF patients, are admitted to hospitals due to fluid accumulating in their bodies. These symptoms are controlled by diuretics, but when patients are placed on these medications, it might not be at the correct dose, leading to fluid build up, or worse.
The Physiologic team aims to solve this issue by using a data-driven algorithm that can outperform physicians when it comes to diuretic dosing, and help keep you, and patients like 'Betty,' out of the hospital, maintaining a better quality of life, and reducing your out-of-pocket expenses. Please help us turn this dream into a reality, we promise to return the favor!
How We Help Physicians
At Physiologic, the co-founders come from a health care background, and understand that the physician-patient relationship is integral to quality health care and will never be replaced. We simply aim to develop a technology that will enhance that relationship with upside for both sides. We have seen first hand how busy physicians are, and the need for effective technologies that do not inhibit their workflow. That is why product is being designed in such a way as to seamlessly fit into the life of a physician, providing all necessary information at hand to ease the decision-making process and focus on more complex issues of patient care. Our product allows you to deliver improved patient care in an efficient manner, resulting in a better quality of life for your patients, and limiting avoidable clinic visits and hospital admissions, while still allowing you to be reimbursed via Medicare. Please support us and allow us to improve health care delivery and the lives of your patients!
Mission: We will help keep Heart Failure patients living healthily, and out of the hospital, improve health care delivery for physicians efficiently, and decrease costs for the health care system as a whole! Use of funds: We are currently raising a seed round of $500,000. Approximately half of the funding would go toward hiring qualified engineers to fully build out our software and to provide the co-founders with a modest salary.
The other half of the funding will go toward sourcing 50 patients for our Phase Two clinical trial testing our data-driven diuretic dosing algorithm, and obtaining data in a way that can be presented to the FDA for regulatory approval. Intellectual Property Status: We do not currently have IP protection other than trade secrets, but after obtaining the requisite data and achieving further funding, we will customize our own smart scale to be released to the mass market and file for patent protection at that time. FDA Status: After completing our current observational study, and have received the requisite funding to begin our Phase 2 clinical trial, scheduled to begin the second half of 2016, we will work hand in hand with the FDA in both designing and conducting our study, in order to receive 510(k) clearance or to be classified as a 'novel' device, pending further research and clarification.
Personal Message: Please help the Physiologic team to reduce unnecessary hospitalizations for Heart Failure patients and improve their quality of life. And also to help us improve physician health care delivery in an efficient manner, cut costly hospital services, and save the US health care system millions of dollars. With technological advances, we can improve health care for the better, together! Thank you for your time in reading this, and, hopefully, for your support!
05/21/2016SYED KHALID- Medical Student
Liked the project.
05/17/2016Dr. Chris Duff- Physician
Followed the project.
05/17/2016Dr. Chris Duff- Physician
Liked the project.
Chris Duff, MD, BS
University of Illinois: Chicago