Fife start-up secures £2m investment for device that can help ease bed blocking

A Fife start-up is set to scale its sensor technology designed to improve remote ward monitoring and ease bed blocking by reducing hospital readmissions following a £2 million funding injection.

Waire Health’s remote patient monitoring device, C-Detect, operates in hospitals and homes autonomously. It is said to cut costs and improve outcomes through continuous real-time monitoring and advanced artificial intelligence. The device, which has been developed at the firm’s Dunfermline headquarters and is manufactured at a facility near Edinburgh, has undergone extensive trials with the University of California, and Waire Health has partnerships in place with organisations ranging from global healthcare organisations to national governments.

The £2m investment has been provided by St Andrews-based Eos Advisory alongside Scottish Enterprise. The funding will see the company grow its management team, production and product development capabilities, while enabling the business to accelerate expansion in global markets including North America.

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Dave Hurhangee, chief executive and founder of Waire Health, said: “The whole area of care at home got pushed over the edge during Covid. What many companies didn’t fully appreciate was the paramount importance of usability.

“If devices have to rely on mobile connections or Bluetooth, they become difficult to use from the outset, for both patients and healthcare providers. We bring design and detail from years of experience of working with the technology, and our devices fall back to cellular if wi-fi falls off. We think we have the best-of-class offering in the industry, and that’s being evidenced by the success we’re having in the market.”

Hurhangee, who began developing wearable technology for radiation monitoring on nuclear submarines based at Rosyth in the mid-1980s, added: “If you can operate a monitoring device from a submarine, that gives you a strong foundation to build for applications across multiple sectors and environments. Along these lines, we’re now branching out into sectors outside healthcare, so that will be part of our next phase of growth.”

Since its launch in 2018, Waire Health has achieved a number of milestones, and was selected by the European Union’s Nightingale project in 2018 from almost 200 applications including by many of the industry’s main players. The company is also running a pilot study in partnership with the Irish government and Indian conglomerate Tata Group.

Mark Beaumont, partner, Eos, said: “As healthcare systems in the UK and around the world move to remote monitoring and real-time patient data, we see a huge opportunity for Waire Health to scale its C-Detect device. Eos is focused on finding, backing and scaling the best science and technology in Scotland that improves quality of life, of which Waire is a brilliant example.”

Kathrina Skinner (Waire Health), Mark Beaumont (Eos) and Dave Hurhangee (Waire Health). Picture: Stewart Attwood

Kerry Sharp, director of entrepreneurship and investment at Scottish Enterprise said: “The health tech sector is vital to the future success of Scotland’s economy and Waire Health is a fantastic example of a company that is showing true innovation in the field.”

Kathrina Skinner, chief operating officer at Waire Health, added: “One of the things we’re proud of is our Scottish heritage, and the fact that we develop and manufacture the product here, something that we were effectively forced to do during the pandemic.”

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