Eight startup companies from around the world are in Syracuse working to get their ventures off the ground. They were chosen out of more than 300 companies to be a part of the first StartFast Venture Accelerator Program in Central New York. Over the next several weeks, leading up to their demo day in August, we will introduce you to each of the companies. This week, our Katie Gibas introduces us a group of physical therapy students turned entrepreneurs using technology to provide better care for patients.
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Justin Lee and Mike Wehrhahn are physical therapy students, and during their clinics, they noticed patients weren't complying with their home exercise plans, and in turn, not getting better.
"The frustration, maybe it was more confusion than frustration. We felt that why are my patients not doing it. Is it my lack of experience? Is it something that's inherently wrong with me a as therapist? And as we kept gaining more experience on multiple affiliations, we came to realize this was a much bigger problem than us," said Mike Wehrhahn, the RevoPT Chief Operating Officer and Founder.
That's why they started RevoPT, a mobile app that allows physical therapists to take video of themselves demonstrating and explaining how to do the exercise correctly. They then drag the clips into a patient's library that can be accessed with a username and password on any device with the app.
"It also reminds patients when to do their exercises and asks patients how they feel after they do the exercises. So it's able to track compliance and track progress of how they feel," said Justin Lee, RevoPT CEO and Founder.
Lee and Wehrhahn say making sure patients are able to do the exercises correctly at home is the only way they will recover.
"The patient doing their part is crucial to rehabilitation. I could be the best physical therapist and treat you in the clinic, but if you're not doing your part and your not doing your exercises at home, outside the clinic, then it's really going to delay the progress," said Lee.
Wehrhahn added, "These patients aren't getting better, and more than that, it's sucking money out of our health care system, in terms of patients requiring follow up MRIs, injections, surgeries that maybe they didn't need because physical therapy is a valuable thing, and if patients comply with their physical therapy, they'd definitely be able to get better."
After just launching a few weeks ago, the RevoPT app is already being used by 15 clinics and gyms in Central New York.
Right now, the app is only available on Android, but an iPhone app will be out in the near future.