TempID has developed a smart thermometer that can be attached to the body and measures and monitors body temperature. Paired with an app, users can analyse and log their temperature readings and, in future, communicate directly with their care provider.
”We offer technologies that show what is actually possible in the field of medicine,” says Rait Rand, CEO of TempID.
The idea behind TempID came out of the need to solve a specific problem. Visiting hospitals, Rand said he started noticing more often how much energy was spent on taking measurements instead of putting it into treatment or well-being. Inspiration also came from his immediate experience taking the temperature of small children, which was sometimes a time-consuming hassle. ”We clearly needed a product that would make life easier – the measurement process itself and kee-ping an eye on the course of a fever,” says Rand.
Convenience for home users, patients and doctors
TempID is mainly aimed at small children whose parents want to see how the child’s fever is progressing and responding to medications. A second main target group is the elderly, especially those in nursing homes who need their body temperature monitored and analysed constantly.
There are products similar to TempID, but the solution varies greatly from the competitors in price, accuracy and durability. TempID is a reusable home product and lasts up to a year. Other comparable products currently last up to two days. Pharmacies also carry single-use strips that can be pressed to the forehead and change colour.
The true uniqueness of TempID lies in its enhancements. The treatment log feature lets the user record and analyse health indicators and later share them with their physician over a secure data channel. The doctor can use the data to lay down a plan for further action – call the patient in for an appointment, give advice or pre-pare a treatment plan. ”We don’t just have a thermometer, but the key value added – intelligence – is included,” says Rand.
The core of the TempID team is four experts with extensive work experience in the tech sector: Rait Rand is the CEO, Alvar Pällo handles the mechanical and hardware side, Mihkel Tedremaa takes care of industrialization and Alari Õis develops the software. The team developed the adhesive concept from start to finish. The fast-developing company will soon get reinforcements, as the staff is too small to implement novel technological solutions in the pipeline. Constant effort is being poured into developing the treatment logs and user interface and the encrypted channel to enable direct communication with the physician.
Interest is high
”There’s clearly a gap in the market that needs to be filled, and now we’re doing so,” says Rand. Südameapteek took an interest in TempID early on, and cooperation is ongoing to put in place the pricing model, sales quantities and distribution options for the product for when it reaches pharmacy shelves. Other major pharmacy chains, Apotheka and Benu, are also interested in stocking TempID.
We offer technologies that show what is actually possible in the field of medicine
Rand says the company has not had to do sales work to introduce the product; rather, consistent communication with various people in the medical sector has helped. Participation in last year’s Tehno-hack at Tallinn University of Technology brought TempID renown. The first prototype was developed at the hackathon. TempID also won Estonia’s largest business idea competition, Ajujaht. The latter achievement put the company on the map for pharmacy chains and consumers.
Consumers who tested a sample batch of TempID devices mainly praised the ease of use, and the team got a sense of what had to be improved to meet consumer expectations. Today the team also has a hospital management member as a consultant. Feedback is gathered from user groups and medical staff for certification of TempID as a medical device, and clinical testing is conducted with at least 105 patients.
Women opting for an increasingly popular contraceptive method – the rhythm method – are also interested in a solution that can measure and log body temperature. Current solutions require taking of one’s oral temperature every morning at a specific time, which no longer yield as precise a reading as needed if sleep habits change. However, TempID monitors the body temperature all night long. The ovulation window can easily be determined using the adhesive thermometer, as a woman’s body temperature rises about 0.4 degrees during that time.
Although TempID is clearly aimed at measuring and analysing human body temperature, the team takes a flexible approach in product development. They are engaged in various cooperation pro-jects related to medicine and sensors – how different body parameters can be measured and monitored at home.
The logistics sector has also expressed an interest – Omniva, ABB and other companies have tested the product for monitoring the temperature of transport crates. SYNLAB is also interested in using it for monitoring the state of the medical samples they transport.
Future plans start in Estonia
The primary goal for TempID today is to obtain the medical device certificates needed to enter the market. In summer, pilot testing will begin and by the autumn, at the height of the fever season, it’s plan-ned for the product to be on pharmacy shelves.
Rand says export plans depend on how the product is received on the Estonian market. Thanks to the Südameapteek chain and the distribution options, the road to Scandinavia is open. Healthcare workers from countries where access to medical care is not as elementary as it is in Estonia have also taken an interest in TempID. Places with a large population or thinly settled area are seeing telemedicine grow in stature and it makes the lives of inhabitants much easier if they can monitor their health at home and exchange information with their doctors remotely. This is why healthcare workers in Ghana and Indonesia are interested in TempID as is an India start-up that assembles medication kits for older people.