Galit Zuckerman-Stark of Medasense tells us about confident pain management and the pandemic.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Galit Zuckerman-Stark: Thanks. We’re doing fine. It’s been a challenge with small children and their remote schooling, but we’re thankful to be healthy and have more family time than we’ve ever had before.
Tell us about how you founded Medasense.
Galit Zuckerman-Stark: Early on in my academic path, I became aware of the prevalence of pain suffered by hundreds of millions every day and the challenges the medical community faces to manage each individual’s unique experience of pain. I have been driven by a vision to overcome this suffering by developing a technology that enables clinicians and individuals to objectively quantify and monitor pain to enable personalized treatment.
I founded Medasense in 2008 to develop my prototype sensor-based technology, leveraging artificial intelligence and machine-learning algorithms, and to bring it to market. With the backing of clinical evidence, publications, expert guidance, key investors, and strategic partnerships, Medasense is now impacting how pain is optimized and managed, improving outcomes and helping avoid excessive use of opioids and adverse effects of pain medication for people around the globe.
How does Medasense innovate?
Galit Zuckerman-Stark: Medasense provides an innovative pain monitoring solution designed to help clinicians provide optimized and personalized pain management and avoid excessive medication.
Our NOL® technology objectively monitors and quantifies the patient’s pain response level by means of a non-invasive sensor platform and artificial intelligence algorithms that analyze multiple physiological parameters to determine the objective level of pain that the patient is experiencing. With this information, the clinician can adjust the amount of pain medication to meet the patient’s individual needs.
Given the extent of pain suffering around the world, Medasense has first targeted the most worrying of situations – surgical patients undergoing severely painful procedures. Under anesthesia, the patient cannot communicate, yet physiologically the body experiences the stressful surgical stimuli. Therefore, pain control during surgery is a major challenge and can impact outcomes, length of stay and cost of treatment. Achieving optimal analgesia reduces the risk of patient harm and facilitates a smooth procedure.
Medasense’s pipeline cloud-based solutions will further expand the NOL technology application to enable pain monitoring for remote clinics and home care.
How has the coronavirus pandemic affected your business?
Galit Zuckerman-Stark: Managing pain in ventilated COVID-19 patients who cannot self-report their pain is a significant challenge that clinicians are facing. Quite early on, we responded to reports that we were hearing from teams in COVID-19 intensive care units and promptly enabled the installation of NOL monitors at sites in Israel to allow clinicians to assess its utility. Users have reported that our solution has clear potential to guide analgesia dosages for ventilated COVID-19 patients and, in some cases, may indicate when excessive opioids have been administered and could be reduced. We are continuing to examine how Medasense’s technology can help manage pain for these patients.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Galit Zuckerman-Stark: NOL monitoring is being used in many countries around the world. But with restrictions on face-to-face training, we had to find innovative ways to enable continuous support and guidance for NOL users everywhere. After looking into various options to complement Zoom and webinar sessions, we launched real-time remote support using smart glasses technology that enables medical professionals in the operating room to easily interact with our global team.
Your final thoughts?
Galit Zuckerman-Stark: It’s a privilege to be able to impact healthcare and be part of the startup ecosystem that is changing today’s world at a whirlwind pace. It’s not an easy journey, but I’m glad that I persevered to bring life to my vision for a world where clinicians and patients can objectively monitor pain, optimize pain management and relieve suffering in any care setting.
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