With the few grams heavy smart pen, doctors can evaluate if a therapy has effects or not. Mednic.de was talking to founder Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister.
Mednic.de: How did you get the idea to establish the start-up Tremitas?
Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister: The idea was developed while talking to my father in 2011. We sat in an Italian restaurant and were talking about my great-grandfather, who suffered from tremor. Out of this thought my bachelor thesis project for my study of medical technology developed. The idea of developing a smart pen for tremor patients was also rated as good idea by the build! Gründerzentrum in Klagenfurt and I got more and more support, not at least from Dr. Tara Geltner, who is experienced in non-profit organisations. My father László Zajki-Zechmeister supports me until today in the project. The Tremitas GmbH was founded in 2015. The next important step is to get the CE certificate as medical device for the Tremipen.
Mednic.de: Why is the Tremipen an easing for patients?
Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister: It is finally possible to objectify tremor. As a patient it is not necessary any more to describe a diffuse shaking; it is possible to give the attending doctor the precise measurement data. That’s helpful when it comes to adjusting the medication or verify the effects of a new medication. The attending doctor sees much better and faster, if a dose of medication or type of medication is suitable or not. At the change of a medication patients can talk with their attending neurologists about the daily measurements once a week.
“Future product with Bluetooth interface”
Mednic.de: You are starting a crowdfunding campaign these days. What feedback do you expect?
Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister: We are starting with the crowdfunding campaign on 11th of April, the World Parkinson’s Day. The duration is 30 days and in general every feedback is precious; after all we want to enter the market with a product with rhyme and reason. In the end, the campaign will show us how the market rates the product. With reaching the first threshold of 30.000 € we can finish the CE certification process; this is our main goal. When we reach the 50.000 € threshold we can start with developing an app that will make the extraction of the measurement results very comfortable due to the Bluetooth interface.
Mednic.de: Will Tremitas develop more medical devices if the Tremipen is a success?
Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister: If we reach more than the 50.000 € threshold we can develop new products faster than thought. Also we can enhance the Tremipen continuously..
“From the idea until today have passed seven years”
Mednic.de: How long does it take to enter the market with a medical device like the Tremipen?
Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister: From the initial idea until today almost seven years have passed. Without different assistance jobs, my parent’s support and the support of incubator centres, as well as receiving a zero-rate credit, the start of Tremitas would not have been possible.
Mednic.de: Should it be, in your opinion, easier for medical technology start-ups to introduce products and bring them to the market?
Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister: To bring certified medical devices to the market is strictly regulated in the EU. On one hand this is an advantage for the patient because only matured and safe products enter the market. An advantage for the company that develops a product is that no competitor can bring the same product to the market because they will have to go through the same certification process. On the other hand, patients get help much slower than theoretically possible. If you start as medical technology start-up you won’t need just a good team and ideas – also money and time are important. You need to survive a lean period; this often breaks start-ups their necks. To get a CE certificate is necessary to invest about three to four years of work. And without a certificate it won’t work – doctors won’t take the product seriously.
“Med-tech start-ups should network more”
Mednic.de: Which facilitations are desirable?
Tibor Zajki-Zechmeister: A distinction should be made which sort of product someone is bringing to the market. Is it a completely new, highly sensitive product or is it just a modern clinical thermometer? Additionally, start-ups of the med-tech area should network better. This would be a very important and useful step! With this linking, not every team needs to start at the scratch, this is not necessary. Many experiences are transferable so that new solutions could enter the market about three to four times faster. In many cases this would be an easing, especially for the patients. The incubators could support in building the network between the start-ups.