DTU’s High Tech Summit gave the impetus for the development of a toilet concept for inpatients.
Foto: Kristian Septimius Krogh
Two nurses met up at DTU’s High Tech Summit in 2017 with an idea to develop a toilet which can automatically weigh patients’ stools and urine. At the summit, they met the company Prevas, which could help them develop measurement methods and produce a toilet mockup, and the nurses are today ready to present a prototype to potential investors.
“The High Tech Summit is fantastic, because you meet a lot of dedicated experts and developers who know it’s possible to develop an idea, and have tried it before. We would never have found the product development company Prevas by looking in the phone book, but—at the summit—we met them face to face. They helped us visualize a time frame for the development of a product, and we were given useful information about where Prevas could help, and where we should contact other companies. The meeting concretized the further work for us.”
Marie Lommer Bagger, nurse and founder of Measurelet.
Nikolaj Hanson—business development manager in Prevas—agrees that the High Tech Summit is a good platform for finding new partners.
“The summit matches companies like us with new projects. Our company has 600 employees, but we’re not a known brand. And regarding the specific project with two hospital nurses, they would definitely not have found us if it hadn’t been for the High Tech Summit. Likewise, we’ve no chance of hearing about them, or knowing that they actually brought both funding and ideas with them to the summit, but lacked someone to realize their ideas,” says Nikolaj Hanson.
Marie Lommer Bagger and Louise Bangsgaard conceived the idea for the high-tech toilet at their workplace at the Gastrointestinal Clinic of Copenhagen University Hospital (Rigshospitalet), where part of their work as nurses consists in keeping fluid balance charts for patients. Keeping these charts is time-consuming work and involves weighing patients’ stools and urine in bedpans daily.
In the spring of 2017, they presented their idea for a high-tech toilet in Capital Region of Denmark’s Innovation Competition 2017, in which they won a prize of five months with pay to develop the toilet as well as a qualification course at DTU Business.
At the High Tech Summit—in addition to Prevas—the two nurses met the company Foss, which could contribute with the use of artificial intelligence in the product, and, finally, they are working with a team of students at DTU Diplom in Ballerup. The students help make some of the basic conceptual decisions. For example, the toilet project has developed from being an accessory which can be mounted on top of an existing toilet to a solution designed as a complete toilet.
Marie Lommer Bagger expects that another year’s work will be required before Measurelet has developed three prototypes that work and can be used to convince customers that the functionality is in place.
The high-tech toilet Measurelet has received awards at:
Capital Region of Denmark’s Innovation Competition 2017. A regional pilot project, primarily in collaboration with DTU Business, which called for innovative ideas from all the region’s healthcare units. Twenty ideas were selected and underwent a qualification course at DTU Business, and three projects were chosen as winners, including Measurelet.
Berlingske Business Boost 2017. More than three hundred ideas were submitted to Berlingske Business Boost. The 30 best ideas progressed to the next round, where all participants had to give a 1-minute elevator pitch to entrepreneur Morten Strunge. Fifteen participants then qualified for the final, where they had to pitch the idea to a panel of well-known entrepreneurs, who then announced Measurelet as one of ten winners.
“It’s no use closing your eyes to the changes. We need to constantly keep up and try to influence the process.”
Professor Jan Madsen, DTU Compute