The government-backed Future Health Mission has hand picked 20 of the UK’s brightest entrepreneur-led companies to fly out to Boston, Massachusetts, to promote their cutting-edge medical products and devices. 

Products on offer vary hugely from a device which can measure a patient’s health status simply by taking a sample of their breath to another which could knock seven weeks off the time it takes to establish whether or not a patient is reacting positively to anti-depressants.

Delegates have enthused about the number of lives they say their products can save and the amount of money they could save health services both here and back in the UK.

Here’s a sample of what’s on offer:

1.The device that measures your health status via your breath

Anaxsys says its respiratory rate counter, respiR8, could cut post-operative drug induced respiratory depression, post operative cognitive impairment (dementia) and cardiac arrests.
It provides vital respiratory rate monitoring in a number of clinical environments including post-op and ICU, where patients are receiving oxogen through a mask, and emergency and paramedic use for early warning of patient deterioration. 

2.A simple, quick test which could slash the 350,000 cases-a-year of sepsis (blood poisoning)

Sepsis kills more in the US than AIDS, prostate and breast cancer combined. Magnaparva Diagnostics says its rapid and simple to use near-patient diagnostic tool could save lives and costs. Sepsis costs the NHS more than £2bn-a-year.   

3.The test that could reduce the recovery time for depression sufferers

It currently takes a clinician six to eight weeks to see whether or not an anti-depressant is having the desired impact.P1VITAL says its behavioural diagnostic, emotional test battery, could cut this to just seven days. 
Quicker detection of how well patients are reacting to anti-depressants would reduce patient recovery time; health care costs and the wider economic costs associated with depression such as benefits and lost productivity at work.

4.A new product to prevent DVT which makers say is cheaper and more efficient than compression stockings

Sky Medical has brought the geko to Boston. Chief finance officer Jeff Hickman tells HSJ: “More people die from DVT in the UK than Aids, traffic accidents and breast cancer combined.
“DVT is the largest cause of preventable death in the world. geko triggers the body’s own natural mechanisms to improve lower limb blood flow and reduce venous stasis.” Five UK hospitals are currently trially geko, which retails at £17-20 per treatment

5.The personalised mobile phone long-term condition management system

Safe Patient Systems’ safe mobile care system is already well established in the UK.
It allows a clinician to prescribe a care plan to enable a patient to be monitored in their own home and enable pre-emptive intervention of the patient’s condition if it is at risk of worsening. With 20% of people in the UK suffer from a long term condition, better management could improve quality of life for a large number of people and save the NHS substantial sums.

Coming up soon on HSJ’s blog from the Future Health Mission in Boston, an exclusive interview with Technology Strategy Board’s Head of Healthcare, Zahid Latif.