India is the coronary heart disease capital of the world, and a projected 31 percent of all deaths in India happen due to heart diseases. It’s a huge problem affecting millions of people, but two tech entrepreneurs in Bangalore are working on a way to fix it.
Ashim Roy, co-founder, CEO, Cardiotrack, also a photography and travel enthusiast, wanted to create a diagnostic solution that would improve the access to specialized diagnostic services in the rural areas. It was a chance meeting between him and Avin Agarwal in 2012 with whom he shared his vision of creating a portable and digitized diagnostic solution that gave birth to Cardiotrack- an IoT platform which enables instantaneous cardiac monitoring and flow of information through Android-based smart devices between a physician and a cardiologist.
“Cardiotrack idea was the result of discussions between Avin and medical researchers at St. Johns Research Institute in Bangalore. The problem Cardiotrack is trying to address is lack of diagnostics capabilities at primary healthcare centers (PHC) and unavailability of specialist near these PHCs,” says Ashim Roy.
What differentiates Cardiotrack from other startups in the health domain is its use of artificial intelligence. “At Cardiotrack, innovation revolves around efficient ways to bring quality health care services to lots of people through use of Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI), says Avin Agarwal, Co-Founder, Cardiotrack.
How does it work?
The platform gives immediate access to specialized intervention through data portability. ECG data is captured on Cardiotrack using 12 leads and the results are displayed on the device screen along with the option to take print-outs through Bluetooth connection. Cloud storage of the data renders it easily accessible for the user, with the additional benefit of data being available for sharing with family members and specialists. This data will also be available for research-based analytics and can be deployed for targeted medical interventions.
Cardiotrack costs about $500, as opposed to portable off-brand ECG machines that may cost two to four times as much, not including the cost of the phone needed to transmit the results. To make it affordable, the company is planning to offer the use of Cardiotrack on a subscription model. It is also planning to launch a Patient App which is designed to give the patient control of his/her health management.
Being the CEO of Cardiotrack, Ashim is responsible for developing and fostering technological partnerships, managing international business relations and maintaining the buzz around Cardiotrack. Ashim believes that IT should be at the centre of healthcare to make it effective and accessible. “In India, Healthcare technologies have remained largely disconnected from information technologies (IT). This is one of the reasons of healthcare technologies have not followed Moore’s Law that states that cost of technology comes down and performance improves by a factor of 2 every 18 months. For healthcare technologies and services to achieve this trend, IT has to be an integral part of any healthcare solution. The combination of healthcare and IT can do wonders to healthcare services and make healthcare affordable and accessible for all.”
Cardiotrack has been backed by angel investors from Singapore and North America with a total equity investment of $650,000 till date. Cardiotrack is collaborating with the French AI company Cardiologs and Cook Medical of USA to develop devices enabled with diagnostic artificial intelligence. The platform has been well received in smaller towns of developed economies like India, Mexico, Myanmar, Indonesia and USA.
With the development of Cardiotrack and its acceptance in countries where a large section of the population lives in the rural areas, Cardiotrack’s founders hope that they will be able to fulfill the dream of creating a product that is ensuring that specialized healthcare does not remain out of reach for anyone.