Finalist category: Digital Health Award
Digital Health Award, Finalist, 2020
Clin-e-cal is a British digital health start-up, spun out from the University of Manchester and the Manchester Foundation Trust. Its free smartphone app, Rafi-Tone, has been developed to make using an inhaler with a spacer easier and more fun for young children with asthma and wheeze symptoms.
Rafi-Tone was created by University academic, Professor Tariq Aslam, to help his son, Rafi, who was diagnosed with a viral-induced wheeze when he was four years old, and experienced considerable distress when taking his inhalers. His fear and resistance to his treatment meant that he wasn’t getting the correct dose of his medication, which exacerbated his condition, risking hospitalisation.
Despite the fact that asthma and wheeze affects so many children in the UK, Rafi-Tone is the first technology-based solution addressing the distress and panic many children feel when using their inhaler. Crucially, Rafi-Tone is a free solution which has been designed to be available as widely as possible.
Rafi-Tone is designed for young inhaler users, but it also helps parents to overcome the anxieties often associated with treatment, allowing them to log and monitor their child’s inhaler use. Rafi-Tone is underpinned by Clin-e-cal’s patented Sound Response® technology, which recognises auditory signals from the spacer mask to verify that it is being used correctly.
Professor Aslam is passionate about expanding awareness of Rafi-Tone because of the feedback he has had from other parents and healthcare professionals about the need for more recognition and support for young children. Clin-e-cal has committed to keeping Rafi-Tone free to download and is investing in developing the benefits of Sound Response to all inhaler users
Rafi-Tone is a CE marked medical device accessory, and has been approved by ORCHA, scoring 79%. It is also listed on the NHS Digital Apps library and can be recommended to patients via the EMIS app library.