MedCircuit secures funding for A&E software
May 15, 2018
Manchester-based healthcare technology startup MedCircuit has secured £153,000 investment from NPIF - Mercia Equity Finance. The business was founded in 2015 by NHS doctor Lanre Olaitan to assist nurses and doctors in A&E departments in the triage of patients. The software allows patients to check in using an iPad and asks them to provide details concerning their reason for attending A&E. It employs an algorithm and question tree approach to build additional information for the doctor. The aim is to improve efficiency through the reduction in the time doctors spend taking notes at the start of a consultation. The clinical information provided by patients via the software means the doctor can spend less time on patient history, focus on clinical examination and speed up consultations. This should allow patients to move through the system more quickly and help to reduce waiting times. The funding provided by NPIF - Mercia Equity Finance, which is managed by Mercia Fund Managers and part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund, will be used to further develop the software and to run trials across a number of UK hospitals. MedCircuit also secured a £50,000 grant from Innovate UK in 2017 and a further £80,000 investment from the Oxford Innovation Opportunity Network. The number of people attending A&E has increased substantially over the years. In 2017-18 there were 23.9m attendances at A&E departments in England (2016-17: 23.4m), with 88.4% being seen within four hours (well below the 95% target). For major A&E (Type 1) departments just 76.4% of patients were seen within four hours in March 2018 (compared to 85.1% in March 2017), the lowest performance since collection began. Improving the A&E check-in process through the appropriate use of technology may be part of the solution, but declining A&E performance reflects much wider and more challenging pressures on the health and care system as a whole.