Global plans for SmartWard hospital automation systems

Case Study – SmartWard

Imagine if you could work out a way to improve the quality and safety of care for both the patients and health care professionals in the hospital system.  Then imagine if you could take that from humble beginnings in Canberra, to the world. That’s just what SmartWard have done.

Created by System Inventor and Director, Matt Darling, SmartWard is a hospital automation system that uses technology aimed at both reducing incidents of patient harm whilst in hospital care, and improving job satisfaction for health care professionals.

SmartWard has had considerable success in Canberra where the company began, with distribution arrangements throughout Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia. The great news is that they are also currently in talks with qualified partners in Great Britain and China.

But back to Canberra. Why start up in Canberra?

Matt says it’s the high quality pool of talent in and around Canberra.

“There’s lots of activity here in Defence and Government. Canberra has very highly skilled IT people that go way beyond the ordinary programmer. SmartWard requires access to the most talented IT people in Australia, and the world. And we get our people here in Canberra,” he said.

“If your product has an element of ‘for the public good’, as SmartWard does, then Canberra is the place to be. It’s unique here in that there are many local authorities that combine different levels of government, and there’s also great access to the Commonwealth Government,” he continued.

Matt says SmartWard is achieving success in part due to the wonderfully supportive ecosystem that Canberra offers. The business has benefitted from financial grants from the Government, receiving encouragement early on from the ACT Chief Minister, Andrew Barr, as well as lots of advice from various departments over the years.

So what are some other reasons that SmartWard choose to do business in the nation’s capital?

“The work that SmartWard does is like mental sprinting. To live in a park-like environment, hear the birds, breath the clear fresh air…it’s the kind of refreshment you need when you have to get your head down and slog it out mentally. Canberra’s unique rural setting allows your mind to wander and refresh,” says Matt.

He says it’s also the easy access of Canberra to international markets that make it attractive. At just ten minutes’ drive to the airport you can be on your way to international markets very easily.

So what’s next for SmartWard?

Matt says they are thrilled to have been recently approached by Access Economics who reviewed the business’ clinical results and then forecasted a conservative estimate of the savings that SmartWard deployment would generate in a hospital – an estimated savings of $50,000 per bed, per annum. That’s pretty huge.

“We’ve had so many fantastic opportunities here in Canberra and now interest from the top economic consultants in the country. It’s a great kick start for our commercialisation efforts,” Matt concluded.

Want to find out more about setting up a successful business in Canberra? Invest Canberra is here to help.  Contact us today (02) 6207 5111

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