Where are they now and what are they ON about?

The future is certainly looking bright for the ON Accelerator graduates behind the innovative cardiac rehabilitation model, Cardihab.

Did you know that each year around 54,000 Australians experience a heart attack? And while around 83 per cent survive, it’s recommended they undertake Cardiac Rehabilitation (CR) to reduce the risk of future heart attacks.

This can require regular outpatient visits to hospital, two to three times per week for 6-8 weeks, and puts a strain on our already stretched health service. Not only that, it presents a potential barrier to critical follow-up support for time-poor patients who defer visits, putting themselves at risk.

Enter Cardihab! 

Simon McBride, Marlien Varnfield, Leonore Ryan and Satu Marjomaa.

Cardihab is an innovative solution that provides convenient Cardiac Rehabilitation from wherever you are. A software-as-a-service model, it uses an evidence based, clinically validated, patient smartphone app that shares recovery information with healthcare providers through a secure web portal.

The team behind Cardihab took part in CSIRO’s first ON accelerator program in 2015, and through the course they worked with experienced entrepreneurs and mentors to explore target markets and further validate the opportunity to help build their business.

Where are they now?

Only nine months on from graduating from ON, Cardihab have officially become an incorporated company. Following the ON program Cardihab were successful in gaining a spot in the external HealthTech accelerator, HCF Catalyst, and have applied for further incubation funding to continue pursuing their business proposition. But, even greater than these successes, are the future potential benefits and positive impact that Cardihab will start bring to the health industry and society in Australia.

Use of the Cardihab solution has the potential to reduce readmission instances in health care, contributing to higher availability of hospital beds. And the flexible delivery of Cardihab allows patients to play a role in their own rehabilitation which has been shown to increase the likelihood (30 per cent 1) that they will start Cardiac Rehabilitation and complete it (70 per cent1) compared to face to face care.

It looks like the future is well and truly ON for Cardihab. We can’t wait to see what they’re up to next, and we’re just as excited to see what innovative outcomes our next round of Cohort teams bring to the table.

  1. Varnfield Marlien, Karunanithi Mohanraj, Lee Chi-Keung, et al. Smartphone-based home care model improved use of cardiac rehabilitation in postmyocardial infarction patients: results from a randomised controlled trial Heart. 2014;100:1770-1779.


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