IntelliProve and Zorg-Saam ZKJ: case study report
To assess the health of patients, healthcare providers in various settings perform daily measurements of health parameters. The Ghent start-up IntelliProve developed a user-friendly software tool to make this process more efficient. The Belgian residential care group ‘Zorg-Saam ZKJ’ participated in a pilot project with their residential care center Sint-Rafaël.
‘Netwerk Verpleegunde’, the largest Flemish professional organization of and for nurses, reported about this mutual case study in their magazine (article in Dutch).
Phsysiological and mental parameters, such as blood pressure, heart rate (variability), respiratory rate, stress level and oxygen saturation of the blood, largely determine whether a person is in health distress or not. That is why these parameters are regularly checked in various care settings, so that an accurate health assessment of the care recipient is possible. Think of emergency services, operating rooms, but also residential care centers. Especially in the latter, these measurements are still often done manually, with the care provider putting a blood pressure cuff on the resident, for example, or taking a blood sample via an injection.
To make this faster and easier, the Ghent start-up IntelliProve developed a tool that accurately determines health parameters via an optical facial measurement. With a smartphone camera, the healthcare provider records a short video of the patient’s face. Fifteen seconds later, the caregiver gets an overview of the various parameters on the screen.
The IntelliProve technology becomes smarter through pilot studies
In order to further develop their tool, IntelliProve started various pilot projects with IDEWE, home care organizations, residential care centers, etc. The non-profit organization Zorg-Saam ZKJ has been investing in innovation for some time and immediately jumped on the bandwagon. “The pilot is aimed at collecting as much data as possible, so that the system becomes increasingly smarter in interpreting the images and videos” says Kristine Dekrick, staff member for Housing and Care at the Sint-Rafaël residential care center. “Because we are convinced of the benefits of the tool, we started the test process in September 2022 within our protected community.” IntelliProve installed the software at the care providers and explained how it works. Ten residents were involved in the project after giving their consent.
To adjust the system and improve the quality of the image processing, the care providers simultanuously perform a manual measurement in the familiar way today. “This allows us to verify the accuracy of the parameters and to send feedback. We also provided useful information about the use of the tool. The video should now be about fifteen seconds long. It is not easy for people with dementia to sit still or remain silent for so long. We fed this back to the developers, who are now investigating whether shorter videos are possible.”
Intuitive, non-invasive tool
The tool is very easy to use. To get started, all you need is an app or a platform/dashboard to integrate the API software. Similar to a camera, the tool shows how the caregiver can easily center the patient’s face within a frame, so that the video is recorded correctly. Kristine: “The fact that the tool works without contact not only allows a much faster measurement, it also reduces the risk of cross-contamination between residents, or between healthcare providers and residents. Moreover, we can also perform measurements while a resident is sleeping. This non-invasive way of working offers many advantages. For example, with palliative care or seriously ill residents.”
In a next phase, the residential care group agreed to also start an additional study in another residential community in Q2 of 2023. “We are absolutely in favor of involving as many people as possible. It is important to map out different people, with different skin colors and with or without facial hair. We therefore also encourage our own employees to get started with the tool, as well as the family members of residents and visitors.”
In the future, IntelliProve will provide a software module that can be integrated into an external care platform. The data from the app or module can be linked to the digital systems of a specific organization. For the Zorg-Saam ZKJ, this offers absolute added value in addition to the ease of use and time savings. “If this information can automatically flow into a resident’s nursing file, every care provider has immediate access to all necessary and correct data. That benefits the health of every resident.”
About Zorg-Saam ZKJ
The vzw Zorg-Saam ZKJ is a care group of fourteen residential care centers, including the residential care center Sint-Rafaël. Their core task is to offer contemporary, high-quality services to the elderly. They do this together with 2,300 expert employees and 800 committed volunteers. The facilities of the non-profit association Zorg-Saam ZKJ have a “HEART” for the elderly and invest in warm, person-oriented care.
More info: https://www.zorg-saam.be/
About 'Netwerk Verpleegkunde'
NETWERK VERPLEEGKUNDE is the largest Flemish professional organization of and for nurses, founded in 1936. They are at the service of their members with various Working Groups and Regional Networks. For example, they collect professionally relevant expertise in a broad sense to defend the interests of nurses with various social stakeholders.
More info: https://www.netwerkverpleegkunde.be/nl/home
IntelliProve is a MedTech start-up based in Ghent. The company develops software for measuring both physiological and mental health parameters by performing facial analysis. By entering into qualitative partnerships with large national and international organizations, IntelliProve is able to build an accurate product with great added value within hospitals, residential care centers, digital mental health care and during teleconsultation.