A Lisburn company has played a key role in developing a new product to help sufferers of chronic lung ailments.
The Vitalograph COPD-6 is a small, affordable and easy-to-use device which was developed under InterTrade- Ireland’s REMINAC business network.
It allows sufferers of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease to monitor their condition remotely, rather than having to travel to a GP or hospital.
The developers, a cross-border collaboration between three companies from Lisburn, Limerick and Ennis, Co Clare, invested £250,000 in the product and are already adapting the device so it can also be used to monitor other conditions like asthma and cystic fibrosis.
Outsource research and development company Marturion of Lisburn, was responsible for the design of the device, including the electronics and embedded software.
Limerick company Eirwave designed the Bluetooth technology which enables the device to transmit data remotely to a monitoring centre.
And Ennis-based Vitalograph developed the software to receive and monitor that data.
Marturion managing director Dr Andy Barr said: “COPD is a major problem throughout the world and, along with cystic fibrosis and asthma, is among the most prevalent life-threatening lung diseases in Ireland — but both can be treated if detected early enough.
“REMINAC allowed us to develop a hand-held device which provides fast, simple and effective prespirometry screening for those at risk, allowing for more effective control of the patient’s health, with less need for medical intervention.
“The economic benefits of this device for the health service, in particular, are numerous.”