Hospital Acquired Infections, or HAIs, are a very serious problem and very serious business. Over 100,000 people in the U.S. die every year from infections they acquire once they are admitted to the hospital. The biggest culprit in the passing of infections in the hospital is improper hand washing.
While it’s such a critical part of patient care, doctors, nurses, techs, volunteers, and other hospital caregivers either skip hand washing all together or quickly run their hands through water without washing them thoroughly.
IntelligentM is trying to fix that problem using sensors. The Sarasota startup has been through the BluePrint Health accelerator in New York, the GE Startup Health program, and the SXSW accelerator program.
The sensors, actually in this case RfiD tags, are embedded in a bracelet that hospital care givers wear. Sensors are also installed at hand washing stations and most points where a caregiver needs to administer care.
The water safe bracelet, similar in size and material to a “Live Strong” bracelet, communicates with the sensors on the hand washing stations. The bracelet can tell how long it’s been at the hand washing station. They emit a buzz or vibration that tells the caregiver to wash their hands and gives a shorter signal when hands have been washed.
The bracelet also has a microUSB connection that can output historical hand washing information for hospital administrators.
With the introduction of “ObamaCare” HAIs became an even bigger focus area. Hospitals will now have their infection scores posted publicly, and infection rates will play into reimbursement rates for hospitals.
The IntelligentM has been testing at a Sarasota hospital since last year.
Find out more at intelligentM.com