Xavier Garcia (Better Care): “Thanks to technology we reduce deaths”

Xavier Garcia (Better Care): “Thanks to technology we reduce deaths”

Recently, the Sabadell company, born in 2010, com spin off Better Care del Parc Taulí has ​​opened its new corporate headquarters, Better Care Hub, in the city. As part of the expansion plan, the biotechnology company is preparing to open a branch in the United States in the coming months and close in 2024 with thirty new jobs, with up to 50 workers. “The plan is to get us above our 60 million turnover in three years, while being conservative,” says the CEO. Xavier Garcia.

From a research project in Tauli to opening a center in the city. Throughout these fourteen years, two factors have been important: First, unlike other technological solutions that seek to apply a solution in the health sector, we were born from one as a solution adapted to a real problem for health professionals. This means that our solution has no problems in terms of data protection, because we have always worked from the environment, following European security regulations.

And the other factor? Intensive care units have hundreds of connected pieces of equipment that generate data, and Dr. Louis Blanch and engineer Bernat Silz collaborate to find software to harness data about an ICU patient. What happened? This data was used only in front of the patient: he looked at the screen and made decisions with this reading. But what about the former? And then? Here they decided to work with a tool capable of collecting information, in an unbiased way, regardless of the manufacturer, to homogenize it and in this way be able to present it together and manage it retrospectively, with indicators to exploit it. Crossing information with all decision-making processes.

Has keeping the headquarters in Sabadell always been a priority? Yes, and it will probably be our corporate headquarters for many years to come. It's true that we had many siren songs to go to Barcelona. The two main hubs came looking for us, but although it's still interesting to us, it's a very saturated ecosystem. We want to create the triangle of Sabadell, the Parc Taulí Hospital, the shareholders of Better Care with whom we share a great relationship, and us. We want to influence the city. It's not that we implement ourselves in the city, we want to be part of the city. We want to have synergies that go beyond our business: managing talent areas, spreading and promoting technology careers among young people, and even being able to collaborate with other influences that are not related to our specific field.

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And the focus continues on intensive care units only? We have evolved and today are able to manage all data generated from a patient at any point in the care cycle. In other words: from the moment the patient enters the ambulance, we can already collect data in a continuous format and we can already present it to the hospital so that the command center can evaluate the patient's condition and the type of hospital depending on the people transporting. Criticality so that it hits the ground running after surgery, for example, so that any professional who has to make a decision knows what happened with that patient. It seems very obvious but in many hospitals it is impossible and there is no such cross-section.

How far can the model you propose be scaled? In the broader sense of health services. On the table is a tender for UCI's CríticCat model tasty Unique in Catalonia, which will allow the Ministry of Health to know in real time the number of patients, the level of importance and, through predictive models, what the bed occupancy rate is in two weeks and a month, with the aim of effectively determining resource dimensions. In this area, the scope for improvement is enormous. During the pandemic, most information was sent via fax, and today technology allows us to obtain near-real-time information, make highly relevant decisions, and anticipate future needs.

Are we facing a paradigm shift in the health sector when it comes to decision making? What will prevail: experience or the reliability of technology, like yours? We'll always have to talk about support tools. We, the only thing we raise to the professional are the metrics, variables, predictive models and predict possible critical events, which would help the professional to make the decision with his experience. We are not too intrusive. In the health field, we may run the risk that if they rely excessively on automatic processes, and they fail, it may be that the professional does not have the capacity or willingness to make decisions.

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Can some of these decisions be automated? There are low-value, time-consuming decisions, such as taking the temperature. You probably don't need someone to take it, and with an infrared system you can measure that temperature. This tool should provide higher quality between doctor and patient, and the time is actually between doctor and patient, not collecting or analyzing information, which is what machines already do.

Is there any clinical evidence of the application of your technology? Yes. Hospital stays are reduced as are deaths, especially with critically ill patients. Making decisions as quickly as possible can avoid serious deterioration problems, such as respiratory ventilation: with our indications we provide guidance to the intensivist so that he can ensure that the patient is synchronized with the ventilator and is comfortable. If there is no relief, the patient deteriorates and does not develop well, and the tube may rupture, knowing that this increases the risk of death by 50%.

What role will Better Care play in the future of medicine? We will see radical changes, with the decentralization of service. The model should move towards the episodic, where the health space is in the patient's home. It provides very great benefits, besides saving resources, and ensures maximum personalization in the treatment of people. This is already happening with oncology: with cancers with a mortality rate of up to 80%, today we have already halved the morality cup with very personal strategies.

Entering the market late, what does it mean? It is true that from a business point of view, a lot of time has been lost, but now we are going to market with a very strong product that we want to exploit, and we are now focused on reaching as much of the market as possible in as little time as possible. time as much as possible. We have a solution that has been validated for 8-9 years through R&D.

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For economic results purposes? We only posted losses for one year. In recent years, we have made profits, but they are profits in activating research and development, otherwise we would have remained in operating losses. Hopefully this year. We finished the year this year with over a million sales and expect to exceed six million in 2024. Public tenders are proceeding at the pace they are going and have been postponed to this year.

Where is the expansion plan heading in the coming years? We are present in 14 countries, mostly in Europe, including Canada. In the second semester, we want to be present in the US, which is our main focus, and facing 2025 to establish a subsidiary, positioning ourselves above our turnover of 60 million in three years, while being conservative. We are still unclear about where to locate it; Whether in Boston, where the health technology ecosystem and venture funds are located, or in Miami where there are many hospitals and the business potential is very large.

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