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BioLert Is Improving Quality of Life for Those with Epilepsy

Anthony Maestri, Coordinator, CTA Foundation, Consumer Technology Association (CTA)

It is estimated that 2.2 million people the United States have epilepsy. As some forms of epilepsy are resistant to medications, one company set out to use technology to help those who suffer from epilepsy.

We had a chance to speak with Ron Nag, CEO of BioLert, on how their technology is helping grant greater independence and safety to those suffering from epilepsy. 

Tell us why you got involved with BioLert?

I have always wanted to make a meaningful difference in people’s lives by leveraging technology as a means to better patient outcomes and improved quality of life.  I have been involved in many technology endeavors where the end goal was to deliver a new type of technology - but what can and does get lost in delivering technology is the context, application and need for the technology.  

BioLert implements enough cutting edge technology to help people suffering from the chronic illness of Drug Resistant Epilepsy (DRE).  For these people, delivering a sense of security and freedom can dramatically improve their quality of life.

How does BioLert help those suffering from seizures?

BioLert monitors, detects and notifies when a person has a seizure using off-the-shelf consumer technology of smartwatches and smartphones. Users do not have to purchase a specific piece of hardware that only monitors their condition. They can use select smartwatches that can be bought at a number of retail locations.  

BioLert collects the data of the seizure and retains it the cloud for patients and medical professionals. This allows for the collection of more accurate information for their doctor to review and possibly highlight pattern of how or when seizures are triggered.

Now a DRE affected person can go on living their life knowing that if a seizure were to happen, their friends, family and medical professionals can be notified by text, email and automated calls so they are aware of the event. If a seizure occurs while the person is on a walk in the park, they have the peace of mind that those they care for will know what’s happening and where.

In addition, the seizure event data that is recorded in real time can be used by medical professionals, researchers and for the development of new features and services.

Tell us about some of the features on BioLert and how you are working on being able to predict when a user is going to have a seizure.

BioLert allows for multiple smartphones to be paired with one users’ smartwatch. This allows the person who suffers from DRE to have the assurance that whomever needs access to the seizure data can be included. This means parents, roommates and doctors can be included with BioLert. The GPS system gives the location of the patient when seizure occurs so if the person is alone, then someone can find and render aid if needed.

BioLert is continually analyzing its algorithms and patient data to enable new services including predicting a seizure.  

Currently, we are looking into correlating other sensor data to improve performance and quality of service.  Predictive systems is on our roadmap, as we are implementing Machine Learning and AI. This will not only help with prediction, but also personalization of the service per patient.

What is the most rewarding part of working on technology helping those suffering from seizures?

For me, giving a mother confidence that she will know when a seizure is happening to her child when she isn’t right next to him. Giving a child a sense of independence so that they can feel free enough to go outside and play while his parents are inside finishing dinner. Those stories are the most rewarding part of this endeavor.  

I’ve personally spoken with a mother who has been sleeping in the same bed with her child for more than 10 years, because she is too afraid of missing a seizure even in her child’s non-waking moment. BioLert provides a way for this mother to sleep in the next bed over or even in her own room.  This is huge for the caretaker – they get a degree of freedom that they believed they have lost forever.  This also allows the child to gain a sense of independence that has been missing previously.

This highlights to me how technology with a purpose and heart can change the life of a person (and their loved ones) suffering from such a debilitating chronic illness as DRE.

Learn more about how technology is changing our world.