In collaboration with DanBan, Plougmann Vingtoft donates expert consulting worth DKK 50,000 each year until 2030 to selected start-ups that contribute to one or more of the UN’s 17 global goals. One of the recipients of the 2022 donation is Yuman, which develops assistant robots to assist nurses.
Busyness is one of the biggest reasons why a large proportion of nurses in Danish hospitals are not happy about the quality of their work. At the same time, the health sector is strongly challenged in terms of recruitment, and in order to reach Sustainable Development Goal #3 on health and well-being,estimates that the world will need an additional 9 million nurses and midwives by 2030. This places great demands on the nurses, both today and in the future, to run faster and achieve more in less time. The result? Poorer quality of work and less time for the actual core task: Caring for and taking care of the patients.
Fortunately, there is help to be found from: An early-stage start-up company that is developing innovative robots that can act as assistants for nurses by facilitating the transport of small items in hospital wards, like food, bedding, and medical equipment. With the robots, nurses get more time with the patients, which both increases job satisfaction and prevents burnout among the hard-working nurses.
With their innovative robot solution, Yuman contributes to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals #3, #8, and #9, where in particular the connection between decent working conditions, higher productivity, and a sustainable innovation is what drives the CEO and co-founder of Yuman, Sara Lopez Alaguero and her co- founder Andrei Chirtoaca:
– Our preliminary studies show that on an average day, a nurse spends 37 percent of the time going back and forth with things for the patients. But with the help of our robots, a large part of that time can be avoided, and the nurse can instead use the time more efficiently with the patient, says Sara Lopez Alaguero.
Knowledge of IP protection must strengthen the business
Yuman is one of the four lucky recipients of this year’s IP Matters donation. The donation consists of IP consulting worth DKK 50,000 from Plougmann Vingtoft’s team of hand-picked IPR specialists with expert knowledge within the relevant business area.
– We are very proud to have won! IP consultancy is a big expense for a start-up at our stage, where every penny must be used properly, so it means a lot, says Sara Lopez Alaguero and elaborates on how the expert consulting from Plougmann Vingtoft should be used:
– We applied for the donation because we are developing a very complex solution and we do not have enough knowledge about how to patent it. Therefore, we need to receive professional help on how to protect our idea so that it is not copied, and to know which parts of the solution we can share with the outside world – for example when we present our solution at a conference or in an investor pitch.
With the expert counselling from Plougmann Vingtoft, Yuman hopes to have a stronger position – both when it comes to potential investors and competitors.
A close collaboration with several hospitals
Until now, Yuman has focused on getting to know the market and talking to nurses from more than eight Danish hospitals and clinics.
In addition, they are currently working on developing their solution in close collaboration with several private and public hospitals and will begin testing during January 2023. Since February 2022, Yuman has raised DKK 2.7 million, and they will spend the money on developing their technology, expanding the team, and running pilot tests.
By fall of 2023, Yuman intents to have the first MVP (minimum viable product) ready, which they will use as a starting point to introduce their robots to more Danish hospitals and help nurses all over the country:
– In the long term, we hope to be able to expand the solution to other areas within the health sector – for example nursing homes and the social and healthcare area. In addition, it is our ambition to launch the solution in the rest of Scandinavia and Germany. But we would like to stay in the healthcare sector, as this is where our solution creates the most value, concludes Sara Lopez Alaguero.
IP Matters was recently awarded during autumn 2022, where four lucky start-ups each received a donation of DKK 50,000 for expert IP consulting.
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