The Problem; An In-Depth View
Common complications affecting vulnerable populations take HUNDREDS of thousands of lives, and cost BILLIONS of dollars.
Falls are a complication that seriously injure nearly 10% of patients >65 in hospital (2% of this demographic will be admitted per anum!). They alone cost NSW, a single state in Australia of 7million people $558 million1, and the US upwards of $30billion2 every year!
DVTs (clots) affect up to 17% of immobile patients3 and kill 15% who have them dislodge4 – costing the US $27.3 billion a year5.
Pressure sores affect many in acute situations and in post-surgical recovery (or those with skin conditions). These last months to years and cost $129 000 per patient to treat, totaling a low end estimate of $11billion/year to the US6.
And pneumonias are the 3nd largest cause of hospitalisation after pregnancy and falls7,. They take over 950,000 children8, as well as many elderly, immunosuppressed and bed-bound patients disproportionately, every year.
And the elderly, those with chronic illnesses, cancers, other serious illnesses and disabilities are disproportionately affected – although ANYONE can suffer these fates in hospital!
In addition, it also helps many with other medical conditions. Including 70,000 Cystic fibrosis patients, 26 million heart failure patients (who regularly sleep on stacked pillows to minimise fluid buildup in their lungs), 42 million sleep apnoea patients, and a combined 718 million COPD and asthma patients with lung conditions. A flat position, particularly at night, not only receives the minimal assistance from gravity compared to a slant, but also means greatest force due to muscle mass is placed on breathing. Sitting up mitigates this. This sensation, and the wedge pillow’s impact, is actually what inspired our founder to go out and start Get To Sleep Easy.
Also, 7% of the world’s population – nearly 1/4 people in the developed world14 and up to 80% of expectant mothers15, suffer from acid reflux regularly! A slanted position decreases the angle of the esophagus (food pipe) entering the stomach, and makes it more difficult for stomach acid to travel up the esophagus too.
And finally, between 3 and 10% of the entire population suffer from chronic lower back pain. Over 25% of the elderly population, in fact16!
But that’s not all.
Our wellness Super-app – Centered Around You – aims to make life safer, easier AND more bearable for people when they’re most vulnerable.
The speaker unit in particular will have audiobook features. Included are breathing exercises, and yoga tutorials, but physiotherapists and OTs can program their own instructions in too. It tracks symptoms, diet, exercise regimes and anonymizes data to power research. Reminders of appointments and medications can be programmed in. Depression and other health screening tools are also a key feature.
And importantly, this will also allow users to communicate with loved ones or caretakers when they need them most, as well as connect them to other people who may well be feeling lonely too.
This could make life easier and safer for millions in nursing homes, or those requiring extra care at home, and help YOU Get To Sleep Easy knowing your loved ones are safe.
Part of our values includes equality. We’re also developing a version of this bed which can be used by hospitals in developing worlds too. Indeed, international NGOs worlds are already interested in this cheap, portable hospital bed! We’ll be testing out our already completed prototype in the field quite soon!
The Robotic Walking Frame
60-70% of falls happen when getting out of bed. Our engineers are also working on a walking frame which collapses with patients to reduce the severity of falls, features a seat to allow them to rest, but most importantly, will be the FIRST EVER walker that COMES TO YOU. It will interact with your devices, or your voice, or to when you’re sitting on the edge of our Smart Inclining Bed, and combat falls where they occur most. Help us make all of this a success faster today at www.GoFundMe.com/gettosleepeasy
1) Center for Health Advancement, The Incidence and Cost of Falls Injury Among Older People in New South Wales 2006/07., NSW Department of Health, September 2010.
2) CDC, Falls fact page, available at: https://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/fallcost.html
3) Janata K, Holzer M, Domanovits H, Müllner M, Bankier A, Kurtaran A, Bankl HC, Laggner AN. Mortality of patients with pulmonary embolism. Wien Klin Wochenschr. 2002 Sep 30;114(17-18):766-72.
4) SD Yang, H Liu, YP Sun, DL Yang, Y Shen, SQ Feng, FD Zhao, Wen-Yuan Ding, Prevalence and risk factors of deep vein thrombosis in patients after spine surgery: a retrospective case-cohort study, Nature Scientific Reports 5, Article number: 11834 (2015)
5) C.E. Mahan, M.E. Borrego, A.L. Woersching, R. Federici, R. Downey, J. Tiongson, et al. Venous thromboembolism: annualised United States models for total, hospital-acquired and preventable costs utilising long-term attack rates, Thromb Haemost, 108 (2) (2012), pp. 291-302
6) Harold Brem, Jason Maggi, David Nierman, Linda Rolnitzky, David Bell, Robert Rennert, Michael Golinko, Alan Yan, Courtney Lyder, Bruce Vladeck, High Cost of Stage IV Pressure Ulcers, Am J Surg. 2010 Oct; 200(4): 473–477. doi: 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2009.12.021
7) TM File, TJ Marrie, Burden of Community-Acquired Pneumonia in North American Adults, Postgrad Med. 2010 Mar;122(2):130-41. doi: 10.3810/pgm.2010.03.2130.
8) Malaria Consortium, Quoting WHO figures for under 5 year old pneumonia deaths per year: http://www.malariaconsortium.org/news-centre/worlds-first-pneumonia-innovations-summit-unveils-next-generation-prevention-diagnostic-and-treatment-innovations.htm
9) Cystic Fibrosis Foundation factpage, retrievable from https://www.cff.org/What-is-CF/About-Cystic-Fibrosis/
10) Ambrosy Ap, Fonarow GC, Buffer J, Chioncel O, Greene SJ, Vaduganathan M, Nodari S, Lam CSP, Sato N, Shah A, Gheorghiade M, The Global Health and Economic Burden of Hospitalizations for Heart Failure: Lessons Learned From Hospitalized Heart Failure Registries, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Volume 63, Issue 12, 1 April 2014, Pages 1123-1133
11) Adeloye D, Chua S, Lee C, Basquill C, Papana A, Theodoratou E, Nair H, Gasevic D, Sridhar D, Campbell H, Chan KY, Sheikh A, Rudan I, and Global Health Epidemiology Reference Group (GHERG), Global and regional estimates of COPD prevalence: Systematic review and meta–analysis, J Glob Health. 2015 Dec; 5(2): 020415.
12) R Pawankar, Allergic diseases and asthma; a global public health concern and a call to action, World Allergy Organization Journal20147:12, https://doi.org/10.1186/1939-4551-7-12
13) Sleep Apnea Facts and Figures, Res Med Publication; available from: http://www.quinlansmedical.com/pdf/sleep_apnea_facts_figures.pdf
14) Moore M, Afaneh C, Benhuri D, Antonacci C, Abelson J, Zarnegar R, Gastroesophageal reflux disease: A review of surgical decision making, World J Gastrointest Surg. 2016 Jan 27; 8(1): 77–83.
15) Ramya RS, Jayanthi N, Alexander PC, Vijaya S, Jayanthi V, Gastroesophageal reflux disease in pregnancy: a longitudinal study, Trop Gastroenterol. 2014 Jul-Sep;35(3):168-72
16) Hoy D, Brooks P, Blyth F, Buchbinder R, The Epidemiology of low back pain, Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2010 Dec;24(6):769-81. doi: 10.1016/j.berh.2010.10.002.