By: Pooja Jaeel

TED fellow and founder of Biosense, Mr. Myshkin Ingawale declares that, “There needs to be a rethink in the way healthcare is delivered to people. It needs to be far more decentralised. It can become a consumerist movement in the same way that Wikipedia has been for information.”

Mr. Myshkin and his company have become one part of this new moment through their new uChek urine analyzer app.

Developed for the iPhone, the uChek app allows patients to check and track several parameters, such as glucose, pH, and protein levels as seen in their urine. These indicators can provide insight for patients with affected with conditions such as kidney problems, urinary tract infections, or cancer.

Mr. Ingawale expounds the ease of this simple app. The app uses widely available urine dipsticks along with their own “uChek kit” that consists of a uCheck color mat and cuboid to standardize the light and color environment of the dipstick. The user simply places the dipstick in the color mat, and then places both items inside the cuboid. The phone is placed on top of the cuboid to take the necessary pictures.

Here is a demonstration of a urine test being analyzed by uCheck:

Not only does this app give the results of a current test but it can also track short and long term trends of all ten testing parameters. Results can be emailed to a healthcare provider at any time.

The uChek app and accompanying kit is being sold for $20 at the Apple store. Biosense is in the process of creating the app for the Android smartphones.

While the app is useful for diligent patients tracking their general health, many anticipate a larger use for it within mobile health clinics. Chief marketing officer of leading mobile technology company GMSA, Michael O’Hara says, “Mobile health has immense potential to improve people’s lives since it increases patient access to quality healthcare whilst reducing costs”

uChek promises to do just that. Early trials are being held at the King Edward Memorial Hospital in Mumbai, India where the efficacy of uChek will be tested against more conventional urine analyzers. If uChek continues to prove just as accurate, mobile health providers can save time, money, and space by simply using their smartphones instead of expensive laboratory machines.

Sources: BBC and uChek Official Website