Telewound Care Canada
Using AI to deliver remote wound care to the most vulnerable patients
Project Budget* - $3.1M
Partner Co-investment - $0.5M
Supercluster Co-investment - $2.5M
Wounds are a huge challenge to the healthcare system. More than 6.5 million people in North America have chronic wounds that require ongoing care. In Canada, 30 to 50 per cent of all healthcare involves a wound. Without regular care, these patients can face infections that drive hospitalization, amputation and even death.
The elderly population is at the greatest risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus as well as developing wounds. Today, many of these vulnerable wound patients are under quarantine or in isolation, and without access to the vital wound care they need. If essential care is postponed or improperly delivered, patients are 20 times likely to end up in hospital and 10 to 40 times more likely to need an amputation.
While many healthcare organizations have adopted virtual care solutions to reach patients during COVID-19, the telehealth solutions are often inadequate for wound care. These solutions lack the high resolution, scientifically calibrated images, sub-millimetre accuracy and proper lighting that are critical to remotely assessing and treating wounds.
The Telewound Care Canada project is developing and deploying a technology solution that enables patients to access wound care from their own home, without having to risk exposure to COVID-19.
Led by Swift Medical, the project brings together SE Health, AlayaCare and several healthcare and academic institutions in Canada.
The initiative provides a mobile application that can be used by patients to take pictures of their wound, share them with their healthcare provider and conduct a virtual consultation – all while allowing providers to gain visibility into healing trends, risks and needs. Health professionals can remotely review medical-grade wound images with new imaging AI, which also helps to document, assess and treat those wounds. The platform will be able to quantify and forecast the risk of new or worsening wounds, enabling care providers to deliver proactive and preventive care that will help keep patients healthy at home.
Beyond the COVID-19 crisis, the technology has the potential to improve wound care worldwide by enabling patients to access quality wound care from anywhere.