A New Forest medical communication solutions company has received funding from the Enterprise M3 Expansion Loan Scheme. The funds will assist the company in taking advantage of the increased opportunities it faces following the use of its products across a number of NHS facilities.
Life Stream Healthcare was introduced to The FSE Group by Rosemary Penn-Newman at FPN Ltd. The company was established by John Cooper in 2007 who, whilst running a video conferencing business, was approached to develop a solution that could send live images from one hospital to another. Existing systems could not transmit in high enough definition for diagnostic purposes and were generally not fit for purpose.
John developed the Life Stream products to meet the specific and challenging needs of its target market. Providing a unique medical communications system, comprising both hardware and software, Life Stream allows real time interaction between consultants and other healthcare professionals whilst live streaming high definition video of medical and surgical procedures directly from medical equipment.
Life Stream’s exceptionally powerful software allows the transfer of the huge quantities of data generated from procedures such as a complex coronary angioplasty or angiogram, capturing each frame with every pixel, to ensure a premium image quality is received at a remote location. There is no other system capable of this anywhere in the world and it makes the Life Stream solution ideal for remote consultation, diagnosis and discussion.
Several NHS sites are currently using the system within their cardiology departments, as John explains: “hospitals are increasingly operating across a number of sites or in partnership with other hospitals. Where Life stream is already being used in a cardiac environment, it means that multiple sites can interact, with discussion between cardiologists and cardiac surgeons at remote centres taking place whilst a procedure is relayed from the cardiology centre, allowing surgeons to view and even manipulate images whilst discussing them in real time.”
Life Stream is currently installed at 11 NHS facilities and these sites are already seeing the benefits to patient care and management; efficiency is enhanced, operational costs are reduced and patient diagnosis, referral and treatments times are improved. As a result, the company has a growing reputation within the sector which it is keen to now optimise. This will be aided by the Enterprise M3 Expansion Loan which will be used to build new demonstration units, further invest in the technology and recruit additional staff to support sales and installation.
Dr Mike Short, CBE, Chairman of Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), comment: “Our LEP area is a powerhouse for science and innovation and we are building on this sectoral strength by ensuring that innovative businesses like Life Stream get the infrastructure, business support and access to finance they need to scale up. We are pleased that Life Stream has secured funding from our Expansion Loan Scheme to innovate further, grow their business and contribute to the economic prosperity of our area.”
Derek Ellis, Fund Manager at The FSE Group which manages the Expansion Loan Scheme on behalf of the Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership comments: “Life Stream has succeeded in developing a truly unique solution, endorsed by senior surgeons and consultants and with proven benefits and cost savings that are able to be transferred across the healthcare sector and beyond. The system has global appeal, giving the team a fantastic market opportunity as first movers in this area. We are delighted to be supporting them at this early stage in their development and look forward to helping them achieve their growth plans.”
The Enterprise M3 Expansion Loan Scheme is part of the Enterprise M3 Funding Escalator, a £5.5million initiative funded by Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership. The escalator, which also includes a growth fund, provides eligible companies with loans and equity funding between £50,000 and £200,000 for activities that will deliver high-growth and employment opportunities.