Combining his experience as a paramedic with an entrepreneurial background, a Maple Ridge man has a new product he thinks will help save lives.
There can be occasions when paramedics must make potentially life-saving decisions, but don’t have all the information they need.
The businessman in Lee Roberts saw an opportunity.
He has created a new product that marries the traditional medical bracelet with relatively new smartphone communications technologies.
“It’s something that I’ve been thinking about for the past couple of years,” he said.
Roberts said he wracked his brain, and wracked a lot of websites, researching his potential product. After about eight months of work, he has developed the ResQ Scan Bracelet.
It operates on the same principle as a medical bracelet – people with medical conditions wear them, so emergency responders are aware of potential causes and complications, even if the wearer is not able to communicate.
But the ResQ Scan Bracelet can include much more information, which paramedics access using a mobile device with the right application. They could have the patient’s name and personal information, care card numbers, medical diagnosis, prescriptions, allergies, people to contact in case of emergency, phone numbers and more. The amount of information is unlimited.
The info is all available in a scan of a QR Code (a two dimensional barcode) that takes less than 30 seconds.
QR Codes were originally designed for the automotive industry in Japan, as a fast way of tracking vehicles as they were being manufactured. Today they are commonly in use in the advertising industry, in magazines, fliers and on other promotional materials.
Roberts has been a paramedic for 13 years, and has attended thousands of medical emergencies. It is not uncommon for patients to not have proper identification with them. Paramedics working in the ethnically diverse Lower Mainland also encounter language barriers.
For senior citizen who has had a bad fall, or the parents of a child with a peanut allergy, the bracelet helps provide some peace of mind, he said.
The silicone bracelets sell for less than $50, and that includes all future updates.
Roberts can easily update the bracelets, such as when a customer gets a new prescription or when other information on their profile changes.
He has a background in marketing and public relations from his work prior to a career as a paramedic, so he is presently marketing the product on his own.
“It’s baby steps right now – I’m still working my 50-hour work week.”
He has applied for the television show Dragons Den, to see what the reality TV show investors think of his project. Any publicity is good publicity, in that case.
“Even the people who bomb, or are ridiculed by them, can make out all right,” he noted.
His goal is to establish himself in the local market, expand nationally, and also to develop a proprietary mobile app for first responders.