As the future of wearable sensor devices shows no signs of slowing down, one Calgary startup is stepping up in capturing the data they collect.
Vivametrica is a data analytics company dedicated to wearable technology and their relationship to health and wellness. The company was founded by a team with an extensive research and clinical care background: Dr. Richard Hu, an orthopedic surgeon and former Chief of Surgery at Foothills Hospital in Calgary; Dr. Christy Lane, an associate professor with a Ph.D. in Rehabilitative Medicine; and Dr. Matthew Smuck, the current chief of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at Stanford University.
A few years ago, the founding team recognized from their research a relationship between physical activity data monitoring and health status. Around this same time, wearable health technology had started to take off.
“I think that what we have seen in this last year and in this upcoming year probably confirms that consumer wearables are expanding, and the information from that is expanding,” said Dr. Hu, who is also the company’s CEO.
“Yet for the most part, very few of the manufacturers and others really know what to do with that information.”
Vivametrica’s platform can be used by the consumer for health management. Researchers can also use their data for their work. However, Vivametrica’s main customers are in the enterprise: insurance providers, health care providers and employee health and wellness programs.
Insurance providers can use Vivametrica’s algorithms “to provide an assessment of personal risk for various forms of cardiac disease, lung disease, diabetes and arthritis,” according to President Scott Valentine. Health organizations can use the data again for research purposes, or to provide extra services such as additional data monitoring at a rehab clinic, for example. Health and wellness program providers can help companies quantify the effectiveness of their programs.
Since Vivametrica officially started in 2013, the company has been working to further develop and validate their algorithms. They have also been able to standardize the data collected by different wearables, as each one measures step counts and activity in different ways.
“We can actually tell you what the differential is between two devices and then standardize that so that the actual analysis is done in a valid method,” said Dr. Hu. “We have created those constant conversion factors so that if you’re measuring one device or another, it truly represents the same thing when you start to do the analysis.”
In the last year, the company has also filled a seed round of funding from Calgary and Toronto, won several awards and hired a new CTO. Vivametrica also generated a lot of media interest from a recent legal case in which they assisted.
Vivametrica has recently opened another round of funding. They will also be pitching on the main stage at the Canadian Financing Forum in Vancouver on February 19-20.