Guy Dumont, PEng, a BC Children's Hospital Investigator and professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, has received an NSERC Synergy Award for Innovation in the category of small- and medium-sized companies. Valued at $200,000, the award recognizes superior university-industry partnerships in natural sciences and engineering research and development. Dumont previously won the Synergy Award in 1999 and 2002.
The Engineer-Social Entrepreneur
Dumont and his Vancouver-based industry partner, Lionsgate Technologies, believe that making profits should be secondary to making healthcare affordable and accessible. So they developed the Kenek O2: a very low-cost, clinical grade, easy-to-use, battery-less diagnostic medical device that may significantly reduce the number of deaths caused by pneumonia and pre-eclampsia, which together kill over one million women and children each year—nearly all in resource-poor countries.
The small, lightweight device simply clips onto the patient’s finger at one end, plugs into the audio port of a mobile device at the other, and then uses the mobile device’s computing power to rapidly, reliably, and accurately measure blood oxygen saturation and pulse rate. Approved by Health Canada and set to be distributed in Africa, China, and India in the near future, the Kenek O2 is now being further functionalized: the next version will be capable of measuring other vital signs, such as blood pressure, body temperature, and respiration rate.
Dumont accepted his prize on Tuesday, February 7 in Ottawa, at an awards ceremony held at Rideau Hall, the residence of the Governor General of Canada.
Read more on the NSERC website.