The National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced today that National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) has awarded Ringful Health a research grant to study new ways to engage consumers for cancer screening services. This phase I award is expected to fund a 6 month pilot project at the cost of $150,000 to develop and validate the technology prototype on a patient population. If successful, the NIH program can fund up to $1.65MM for up to 3 years to commercialize the technology.
This project is a collaboration of Ringful Health (Principal Investigator), CHRISTUS St Michael’s Cancer Center (pilot site), and scientists from Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (Dr. Andrew vickers), University of Texas School of Public Health (Dr. Elizabeth Vandewater), and Texas State University (Dr. Ju Long).
The key idea behind this project is that cancer screening needs to be individualized based on each individual’s family history of diseases, life style, or even genetic makeup. As we have seen in recent public controversies about cancer screening guide lines, one-size-fit-all recommendations do not work for everyone. However, individualized screen schedule is also difficult to establish and for patients to follow. It is challenging enough for consumers to follow simple screening schedules — the non-adherence rate for complex individualized schedules would be much worse. This proposed project utilizes secure new communication technologies via consumer mobile devices, to help patients understand, adhere to, and report back their cancer screening tests.
Congratulations to the team, and we look forward to a fruitful collaboration that would result in better prevention of cancer!