Fri. Mar 1st, 2024

For regional and rural Australians, accessing health care services outside metropolitan and major regional centres can be challenging. It can lead to delayed treatment, higher hospitalisation rates and long trips to access care.

Armidale health care service Observa Care is bridging this gap and has a mission to harness the power of digital health technologies to benefit those who live in our most remote communities. Last night, for the development of their innovative Remote Patient Monitoring service model, Observa Care was the winner of the Health Category in the 2023 Innovate with nbn Grants Program awards and overall champion.

Founders Rod and Deborah Martin recognised a desperate need for better patient monitoring during COVID-19 and developed a clinical service model using existing wearable sensor technology which measure patients’ vital signs and overall health status. This information is delivered wirelessly to clinicians via cloud servers.

“It was very humbling to receive this recognition, given the calibre of regional innovators who were nominated,” Deborah said.

“We are grateful to the nbn for sponsoring this grant program, and for the opportunity it gives digital businesses in regional and remote Australia to showcase their innovative problem solving.”

“Observa Care is proudly Armidale-grown, and we are excited to use this award to further develop our health service model for the wider New England / North West region, and beyond.”

Run in partnership with the Regional Australia Institute (RAI), the Innovate with nbn Grants Program is part of nbn’s commitment to lift the digital capability of Australia. The RAI is a founding partner of the Innovate with nbn Grants Program.

Gavin Williams, nbn Chief Development Officer Regional and Remote, said they’ve seen plenty of innovative ideas bursting out of the regions again this year.

“Our purpose is to lift the digital capability of Australia. All of the finalists and grant winners couldn’t do what they are doing without connectivity.

“All of the 2023 Innovate with nbn Grants Program recipients are making real differences to the lives of those who live in their communities. It’s through their work we continue to see regional and remote Australia not only bridge the gap but thrive.”

Liz Ritchie, Regional Australia Institute CEO, said these awards demonstrate with the right support and tools, regional entrepreneurs can compete on a national and even global stage.

“NBN Co and RAI have an enduring partnership based on advancing our shared objective to empower regions to thrive.”

“The Innovate program does exactly that, by celebrating what can be achieved when harnessing the power of connectivity and digital technology.”

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