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Local medical tech start-up heads to Switzerland

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Yaseen Khan, CEO of EMGuidance.
Yaseen Khan, CEO of EMGuidance.

South African-based medical technology start-up Essential Medical Guidance (EMGuidance) is heading to Switzerland to battle it out with 75 other start-ups at the Seedstars World competition.

EMGuidance won the South African leg of the Seedstars World competition, which was held on 29 June.

EMGuidance is a socially-minded company born out of the Open Medicine Project, a not-for-profit which empowers more than 300 000 healthcare professionals in 200 countries around the world through digital information access.

Doctors, clinicians and other medical professionals use EMGuidance to access free clinical locally-relevant guidelines, medicines and care co-ordination information to make better, more informed decisions that improve patient outcomes.

EMGuidance launched its clinical facilitation in the middle of last year. The two founders are medical doctors - Yaseen Khan and Mohammed Dalwai. The platform is made available free of charge to medical professionals and provides locally relevant clinical guidelines, clinical tools and information on medicines.

Yaseen Khan, CEO of EMGuidance, says the judges were particularly impressed with EMGuidance's focus on solving on-the-ground challenges for medical professionals.

"Our stated aim is to improve patient care globally by ensuring medical professionals have access to the correct, locally-relevant clinical guidelines and prescribing information. We've created a platform for medical professionals, which supports improved clinical decision-making through providing a free, single digital access point to information.

"The platform creates an environment in which players within the ecosystem are able to provide contextually relevant information to help medical professionals giving treatment at the point-of-care," Khan says.

Accessed via Android and iOS apps, the clinical guidelines are published on behalf of a growing number of medical institutions, and the Department of Health. "We currently publish guidelines for over 20 medical institutions," Khan says.

He points out the EMGuidance Medicines Section is SA's first free, interactive and consistently updated mobile medicines resource.

"The app is geo-location enabled, thereby ensuring our users are shown the content most relevant to them. The aim of EMGuidance is to improve patient outcomes by providing access to locally relevant clinical guidelines, clinical tools and medicines information at the point-of-care. We have over 5 500 medical professionals registered and using the app.

"Since we provide a platform, there is also opportunity for other role players in the healthcare industry to contribute up-to-date information that may assist medical professionals with making better, more accurate decisions at the point of care," explains Khan. "We believe there is a need for this type of solution at a global level, and hope to fast-track our entry to other markets over the coming months."

As part of its prize for winning the South African leg of Seedstars World, EMGuidance will undergo a week-long training programme where it will meet investors and mentors. In April 2018, the team will head to Switzerland to represent SA by competing against 75 other start-ups from around the world.

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