For the large majority of us who have dreaded those hospital visits that meant needles and drawing blood for blood tests, it’s time to breathe a sigh of relief. For there’s an alternative. Thanks to Bhubaneswar-based startup EzeRx and its unique Made in India, non-invasive device that allows you to get your blood tests done at an affordable price and in record time — and all without having to draw a single drop of blood.
In a conversation with YourStory Founder and CEO Shradha Sharma, EzeRx Co-founder Partha Pratim Das demonstrates how the portable device EzeCheck checks for five different blood parameters — namely haemoglobin, oxygen saturation, bilirubin, creatinine, and blood glucose levels — just by a patient placing his ring finger on the device. The data for the patient is delivered in 10 to 20 seconds, and each blood test costs Rs 35.
Watch Partha’s full video interaction with YourStory’s Shradha Sharma, where she called on ecosystem stakeholders and enablers to support EzeRx through investments and other modes of support. You can too by connecting via email@example.com:
Founded in 2018, Partha Pratim Das, along with Chaitali Roy and Sudip Roy Chowdhury, EzeRX, which stands for ‘Easy for prescription,’ provides easy and painless diagnostic solutions for identifying primary health parameters at an early stage. The startup, which was earlier based in Kolkata, is working to make the adoption of preventive healthcare more appealing and accessible for Indians via easy, affordable, diagnostic solutions.
“About one out of every 11 adults post the age of 45 are diagnosed with chronic kidney diseases. Almost 80 percent of people over 45 years of age are suffering from diabetes and 2 out of 3 women have low haemoglobin. In addition, almost one million people are being diagnosed with liver problems every year. So these are very big problems in the country and if it can be predicted right at the bottom of the pyramid, it will be a big game-changer in the healthcare sector,” Partha tells YourStory.
Partha explained that the EzeCheck device has received the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) certification and has an accuracy rate of over 95 percent. EzeRx is now looking to get certifications to expand into international markets.
Making blood tests a painless experience
Partha revealed that the blood results can be generated on the EzeRx device that works on spectroscopy, and can be accessed using the mobile app. The report can also be shared within seconds through WhatsApp.
Prior to this, the startup had also developed a non-invasive, non-contact, IoT-enabled portable diagnostic device called AJO (short for anaemia, jaundice, and oxygen saturation) for testing anaemia, liver, and lung-related health issues. AJO too was designed to make the testing process bloodless and painless as it measured the spectroscopic signal emitting from the conjunctiva, the clear membrane that lines the inside of the eyelids and covers the white of the eye to provide data on one’s haemoglobin, bilirubin, and oxygen saturation.
While AJO collects data by scanning the eyes of the users, EzeCheck is another version of the blood parameters testing device which collects data with just a tap of the finger.
EzeCheck is a battery operated device with a capacity of 2500 mAh and can run for 10 to 12 hours. The device is manufactured in India, and all components, save for one which is imported from Japan, are from India.
Earlier, Partha had said, “Nearly 75 percent of our population is from rural India and they believe in curative healthcare approach instead of preventative. And that’s a big problem. So, the idea is to identify the primary health parameters in the early stage, so we can easily predict liver, lungs and kidney problems, or even nutrition problems like anaemia and detect random blood glucose, so that patients can then go in for a complete cure. That’s the idea.”
In a previous interaction with YourStory, Partha had explained that EzeRx has two main business verticals — first, where it provides non-invasive prescreening and diagnostics devices, and second, where it is building teledentistry networks in rural and semi-urban areas.
Apart from this, EzeRx also offers an OralOScope solution for detecting oral cancers and pre-cancerous lesions. It also has a teledentistry platform, Aarogya, to help rural and semi-urban areas get access to quality dental treatments.
Partha says that the EzeCheck device will be available for B2B clients including hospitals, nursing homes, NGOs, CSR organisations under a device-as-a-service (DaaS) model.
“We will not be selling the devices but are operating on the DaaS model. Initially, we are charging around Rs 35,000 and 1500 tests including creatine, blood glucose can be done using the device,” he adds.
EzeCheck vs AJO
While the previous AJO instrument cost around Rs 3 Lakhs, the EzeCheck device is low in cost thereby attracting attention from clinics and hospitals across Tier 2 and 3 cities, state government bodies, pharma companies, and health insurance companies, among others. Apart from this, EzeCheck is also less heavy and easier to carry.
“We can provide 10,000 devices in one year which would mean over two lakh tests can be done per day and Rs 50 Lakh revenue per day. Now we need to onboard the right strategies on how we can connect with the state governments and also raise funding. These are futuristic technologies and hence we need high working capital for R&D, manufacturing and sale of the products,” Partha adds.
The Indian Oil Corporation-supported startup had raised a seed round of Rs 1.75 crore led by Odisha-based incubator KIIT-TBI in October 2020. Other angel investors from the US and India also participated in the funding round. Prior to this, it had also raised a funding of Rs 25 lakh from the INVENT programme.
The founder reveals that going forward, EzeRx will also expand its product to provide diagnostic solutions for more health issues.
Partha adds that EzeRx is currently looking to raise funds and network with stakeholders for deploying the device in the Indian and international markets. It is looking to work with hospitals, nursing homes, central and state government schemes, NGO’s among others to deploy the product.