Non-Adherence Biggest Issue in Asthma Management Today

Adherence to medication is the main method of prevention in chronic asthma cases. Asthma symptoms can be suppressed rather successfully with a consistent approach to medication usage. Neglecting to follow a medication regime is one of leading causes of hospitalization and even death for asthma sufferers. BBC published a recent study showing that almost one third of asthma patients in the U.K miss important hospital check-ups. This prevents doctors and healthcare professionals from being able to monitor their patients. Studies also show that a similar percentage of asthma patients in the U.S do not show up to their medical check-ups.

More than a million people suffering from asthma are missing out on key yearly checks. New analysis by charity Asthma UK found that 31% of asthma patients did not receive an “essential” annual review to check whether they are on the right medicine.

The charity said that its review of GP data for 2012/13 showed that there were 3,359,612 people in England who should have received an asthma review but 1,025,539 patients missed out.

NHS guidance suggests that everyone with asthma should get an annual review, an asthma action plan and their inhaler technique checked.

“With the worrying scale of prescribing errors identified by the National Review of Asthma Deaths, it’s vital that doctors and nurses do everything they can to follow up with patients to review their medicines, especially as asthma can vary hugely over the year.

“There is also an unacceptably large variation in the numbers of people attending annual reviews, which ranges from only 52% to 79% across the UK,” a spokeswoman said.

Read the original article here.

Geckocap is a better method to manage your asthma medication. Find out more here

Playful Meme Features GeckoCap in its Blog

Yaniv Corem, CEO and founder of Playful Meme, a design and consulting firm, recently covered GeckoCap in a blog post about asthma control and adherence.

Asthma Attack / Etgar Keret (Translated from Hebrew by Miriam Shlesinger)

When you have an asthma attack, you can’t breathe. When you can’t breathe, you can hardly talk. To make a sentence all you get is the air in your lungs. Which isn’t much. Three to six words, if that. You learn the value of words. You rummage through the jumble in your head. Choose the crucial ones–those cost you, too. Let healthy people toss out whatever comes to mind, the way you throw out the garbage. When an asthmatic says “I love you,” and when an asthmatic says “I love you madly,” there’s a difference. The difference of a word. A word’s a lot. It could be “stop,” or “inhaler.” It could be “ambulance.”

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Interview with the CEO of Geckocap

The following is an interview that Yechiel Engelhard, Geckocap’s founder, gave a few days ago. Check it out!

Tell us about your start-up? How did you come up with the name for your company?

Our product is called GeckoCap. We really love the name because we think it tells our story well.  GeckoCap is a versatile smart sensor fitted in a small colored cap that can help children gain more control over their asthma. So on the one hand, it is a cap; just like the name implies. On the other hand, it has something fun associated with it. The Gecko. Yup. We (and the first kids that helped us build it) really like Geckos. What can I say!

GeckoCap is a combination of a smartphone / web application and an external sensor that is easily added to asthma inhalers. This makes it simpler for children to adhere to their inhalers and helps with asthma management. GeckoCap uses a multifaceted approach by combining different behaviour change mechanisms, such as a gamification system, progress updates, and rewards. Parents and physicians are always kept in the loop. They are offered a rich platform with information that is useful and easy to digest, and they are even part of the game.

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GeckoCap founders awarded 2nd place at the Bio-Innovations Conference at MIT Sloan


MIT Sloan hosts a yearly bioinnovations conference which aims to “(bring) together industry, academic and policy leaders to discuss the most pressing issues and exciting innovations in the healthcare sector.”

Founders Yechiel Engelhard and Mark Maalouf won 2nd place for GeckoCap at the Poster Session along with 1st place Ankit Agrawal with a new approach to nasotracheal intubation, and 3rd place Daniel Lieber and Steven Hershman with next generation tools for clinical genome interpretation.

Check out the Poster Session here.

Geckocap is a better method to manage your child’s asthma medication. Find out more here

The Boston Children’s Hospital Blog features a post by GeckoCap co-founder Yechiel Engelhard

The founder of GeckoCap, Yechiel Engelhard, posted on the Boston Children’s Hospital Blog describing GeckoCap, future company visions, and a few takeaways from the Healthbox Accelerator Program which can be found below.

U.S News and World Report ranks the Boston Children’s Hospital #1 in 7 of 10 evaluated specialties.

  • “The value of focus groups

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MedCrunch covers GeckoCap’s vision to “Make Pediatric Asthma Therapy Fun”

Ido Weinberg, a Harvard Med instructor and a vascular medicine fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital, wrote a recent article on MedCrunch that described GeckoCap as a way to improve the management of asthma in children.

“Asthma is a controllable disease, yet millions of children are hospitalized every year. Leading the trend towards self-management, GeckoCap, a unique, mobile-connected product created by a physician and engineer from MIT , presented last week at the International consumer Electronics Show in Las-Vegas.This Cambridge, MA based start-up company, follows the approach of empowering patients, especially children. The idea is to have children feel they are playing a game while they are actually being treated better.”

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Wallstreet’s Marketwatch names GeckoCap as one of the 10 Quirkiest Gadgets of CES 2013


CES 2013 was a phenomenal experience. We met lots of startups with unseen technologies that aimed to better society. Wallstreet’s MarketWatch posted an article depicting GeckoCap as one of the 10 Quirkiest Gadgets at the show, referring to products that “…meld peculiarity and innovation”.

“One in 10 kids has asthma, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and kids are more likely than adults to have an attack.

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