Healthcare is a broken system. Kids with asthma are getting the same treatment today as their parents decades ago.
Imagine a world in which diabetics didn’t have a blood glucose meter to manage their health. This is the world asthmatics live in today. Parents are left in the dust about their child’s health.
What if you could detect a problem in your child’s lungs a week before symptoms like coughing escalate, and tie an action to it? The average time from the first appearance to the peak of symptoms is 5 days. What if you could catch this at Day 1 and immediately start the recovery process?
This technology already exists, but it’s stuck in the hospital. It’s called spirometry. It’s trapped in the hospital because this device costs anywhere from $1000 to $30,000. It also requires a trained respiratory therapist to coach you through it. Therefore, it doesn’t even exist at most hospitals.
Even if your child does manage to get this test in the hospital, it happens so infrequently: perhaps once a month, once every couple of months, or even just once in your life. On top of all of this, this test is extremely hard. What if I asked you to blow out all the air from your lungs? Now do that for 6 seconds.
How can we make kids do something that’s hard? Make it a game! That’s what we’re doing with Aeris. We’re taking the clunky hospital device, making it portable, and using it as controller for our game. As you breathe in and out, you navigate the skies on a hot air balloon.
In order to fly to your new destination, you have to blast out into the atmosphere. Once you’re able to do this, you land in the new city, and hear a story about this place. You can travel to a new destination everyday.
How do we know this will work? Well, our team at KNOX placed it into the hands of kids at an elementary school, and they loved it. Most of these kids don’t even have asthma, yet they swarmed around me and waited their turn to play. This is how we want to tackle the challenge: by making something kids enjoy doing.
We’re only at the start of this journey, and our best teachers are the kids themselves. What better way to build something for kids than to have them be part of the process? This is the direction that I believe healthcare should move towards. This is how we can take control over our own health and let it be one less thing to worry about.