Arms are a wheelchair user’s legs. 58 million wheelchair users worldwide face this reality everyday. ~70% (42 million) of them experience shoulder injury due to repetitively pushing a wheelchair, leading to greater disability, and healthcare costs. Qbitus is a student initiated startup working on making life easier on manual wheelchair users. Qbitus monitors wheelchair user’s performance, detect movement signatures that increases injury risk, and provide customized feedback to educate manual wheelchair users about proper wheelchair propulsion form.
Qbitus informs healthcare providers early on about the changes wheelchair users propulsion signatures that increases injury risk and seek preventive healthcare before it becomes an injury. Presently clinics use instrumented wheels ($ 20,000 / wheel) to monitor and train wheelchair users in out-patient mode. Due to such expensive equipment cost only a few specialized rehab clinic across US are able to offer wheelchair propulsion training and continuous activity monitoring (outside the clinic and in-home based) to their clients.
At present, no affordable wearable technology is available to help wheelchair users track their activity and provide recommendations that could reduce shoulder injury risk. We created Qbitus, a wearable technology to provide customized wheelchair propulsion training and help healthcare providers monitor their clients wheelchair propulsion signature (shoulder usage by tracking movement), via a mobile device. Using Qbitus, healthcare providers can also provide customized feedback for their client. For rehabilitation clinics, using Qbitus will lead to a better healthcare service delivery at a cost 20 times lesser than the currently used devices.