Telewound Care Canada
Using AI to deliver remote wound care to the most vulnerable patients
Project Budget* - $3.0M
Partner Co-investment* - $0.5M
Supercluster Co-investment* - $2.5M
Wounds are a huge challenge to the health care system. More than 6.5 million people in North America have chronic wounds that require ongoing care. In Canada, 30-50% of all health care involves a wound. Without regular care, these patients can face infections that drive hospitalization, amputation, and even death.
The elderly population at the greatest risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus is the same population at the highest risk for 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 this care is postponed or improperly delivered, it makes it 20 times more likely for a patient to end up in hospital and 10-40 times more likely to need an amputation.
While many health care organizations have adopted virtual care solutions to reach patients during COVID-19, the telehealth solutions used to support most remote health care services are inadequate for wound care. These solutions lack the high resolution, scientifically calibrated images, sub-millimeter accuracy and proper lighting/environmental adjustments that are critical to remotely assessing and treating wounds.
The Telewound Care Canada project is developing and deploying a technology solution that will allow patients to access wound care from their own home and community, without having to risk exposure to COVID-19.
Led by Swift Medical, the project brings together SE Health, AlayaCare and several other health care systems and academic institutions in Canada.
The Telewound Care Canada initiative will provide a mobile application that can be used by the patient to take a picture of their wound, share it with their health care provider and conduct a virtual consultation – all while allowing providers to gain visibility into patient healing trends, risks and needs. Health professionals will be able to remotely review medical-grade wound images with new imaging AI, which will also help 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.