Wellinks makes Cinch, a monitoring device for patients with orthotic braces. Their product is a combination of a hardware sensor that attaches onto braces and software that allows for real-time monitoring of the data.
- Hardware – Cinch is a smart strap that integrates into back braces. The sensor in the smart strap measures tension in the strap, the position the strap is pulled to, acceleration, movement, and orientation. The battery inside the device charges in 1 hour.
- Software – The smart strap syncs to a mobile app that captures the data for patients / parents (real-time feedback) and doctors to check on patients. The software is HIPAA compliant and the data is uploaded to AWS. No data is stored on the app but passed immediately to the HIPAA compliant server.
Using Wellinks, patients, and doctors are able to access their monitored data and see how they compare against their prescribed plan. Important data points for scoliosis patients are length of time the brace is worn and how tight the brace is during that period. Wellinks believes that matching these against the prescribed plan will allow for more effective treatment and reduction in the number of surgeries.
Cinch, Wellinks' smart strap, allows doctors, parents, and patients to track progress and make sure patients are following their prescription. The Cinch platform includes a smart strap that retrofits onto existing scoliosis braces, a smartphone app that syncs and displays data, and a secure web database and interface that provides detailed analytics on demand. Patients can receive haptic (i.e., sensory) feedback from the device to let them know when the brace is tight enough. They can also connect to other patients through the app to give and receive support and encouragement.
Parents and kids can also work together to set incentives that will encourage patients to build better bracing habits at home. Doctors can also see up-to-date treatment information on the web dashboard. They can see all of their patients at a glance, review and print detailed treatment reports with the information they need to make better decisions about treatment.
Current specifications (v1):
• 1.5"x2".5" plastic buckle;
• Sensors inside wear time, tightness, strap position, orientation of brace, activity;
• Feedback via light or vibration;
• 1000 devices in the process of manufacturing;
• Software is HIPAA compliant, and Wellinks meets requirements for Class 1 medical devices (as advised by their FDA consultant, MSquared Associates);
• Wellinks has filed 3 non-provisional patents for the technology, as well as additional provisional patents that cover uses outside of scoliosis.
Co-founders Ellen Su and Levi Deluke founded Wellinks, formerly 109 Design, while undergraduates at Yale University. Dr. Michael Vitale joined the team in February 2016 to add a deep clinical expertise in scoliosis and orthopedic surgery. Their diverse skill sets (including in management, grant-writing, mechanical engineering, clinical trial design, graphic design) makes for a well balanced team. Levi, additionally, has a personal connection to Wellinks' mission as a former scoliosis patient.
Frequently Asked Questions
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