[The Turning Point] How a pet dog helped these entrepreneurs to start healthtech startup Dozee
Mudit Dandwate was always been fond of physics, biology, mechanics, and capturing data from the physical world. While studying at IIT Bombay, he even developed India’s first electric race car and had the thrill of racing it at the Silverstone Circuit in the UK.
After college, Mudit worked with top automobile companies such as Chrysler and Daimler, and was instrumental in developing their driverless AI modules.
A day before his 24th birthday, while returning from Germany, Mudit thought about the impact he had created in his lifetime.
“I realised that while I had achieved good success in personal life, there was a lot to be done for the society. This was with the backdrop of me always being worried about the well-being of my parents,” says Mudit.
Thus, he got in touch with his former colleague Gaurav Parchani to explore the healthcare sector. Realising that ECG monitors and blood pressure monitors work only in contact with the body, they wanted to come up with something better.
They found that most devices do not have the capability to record stress, heart activity, and sleep cycles with 99 percent accuracy. Hence, they zeroed in on developing a health tracker that could work during sleep. This led to the birth of healthtech startupin 2015.
“With the intent of creating the most user-friendly health technology, we evaluated a lot of ideas. We wanted to create a technology that could be used by people across age groups, with varying degrees of technical expertise and healthcare know-how,” says Mudit.
The duo started by creating a sleep tracker. Their first prototype was a thin sheet that went above the mattress. But their pet dog, Pi, who was six months old then, would chew everything in front of his eyes.
“One day, after our first prototype showed good results, we went out to celebrate it. To protect the sheet from Pi, we kept it below the mattress. When we returned, we saw Pi sleeping above the mattress and we could see his heartbeat faintly in the signal. This is how we knew Dozee could go below the mattress too,” recalls Mudit.
Over time, they worked on it to improve its detection and accuracy. After five years of research in partnership with leading hospitals including NIMHANS and Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiology in Bengaluru, Dozee was productised.
Today, Dozee claims to be India’s first contactless remote health monitoring startup. It tracks key vitals of the human body such as heart rate, respiration rate, oxygen saturation, sleep stages, stress-recovery, and more with a medical-grade 98.4 percent accuracy.
How it helps
The contactless sensor placed under the mattress captures real-time body vitals without using any external wires. The sensor captures micro-vibrations produced by the body every time the heart pumps blood, during inhalation, exhalation, muscle twitches, tremors, and body movements.
An AI-powered early warning system then converts these signals into biomarkers and uses the data to present an analysis of the patient’s health through a smartphone app for retail users.
According to the founders, Dozee today is being used by over 4,500 users at home to monitor their health continuously. “Our AI powered early prediction algorithms have been life-saving in 70+ cases, predicting early cases of heart failure, tuberculosis, pneumonia, etc.,” he says.
The team is also working with 25+ hospitals and powering over 1,400 COVID-19 beds into step-down ICUs with its technology. The startup has so far monitored over 7,000 COVID patients in hospitals, leading to 30+ patients being transferred to ICUs on time.
Edited by Megha Reddy