Sensoria, Genesis Rehab Services bringing smart footwear to aging patient care

By Dave Muoio
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Mobile textile company Sensoria Fitness and Genesis Rehab Services, a subsidiary of Genesis HealthCare have entered into a strategic partnership to form a new company called Sensoria Health, the companies announced on stage at Health 2.0 in Santa Clara. Sensoria Health will be using digitally-enhanced footwear — such as the updated Sensoria smart sock and new Sensoria smart shoes — to monitor the daily activity of older adults and guide their rehabilitation therapies.

“Sensoria Health will be a new company 100 percent focused on smart aging, and creating truly wearable transparent and computing platforms for the aging population,” Davide Vigano, CEO and cofounder of Sensoria, said at the conference. “We’re going to combine the clinical strength and incredible patient reach of Genesis with the technology and intellectual property that Sensoria has developed over the past six years.”

Sensoria has been an active player in the smart garment game for some time with its smart socks, which launched in 2015 and through a companion app provide real-time updates on users’ steps, speed, form, and other metrics. The company teased concept sneakers capable of tracking speed, pace, location, and running technique earlier this year at CES 2017, which now appear to have come to fruition with the newly announced smart shoes.

Supporting the new smart footwear will also be the Sensoria Core electronics module, which can be swapped from garment to garment and connects to the company’s garment-embedded sensors to receive the data. These readings can be accessed by users through the company’s companion app, or by providers using a new rehab patient management platform Vigano and Thomas demoed on stage.

“We all do the same thing every day: we get up, we shower, we get dressed,” Sarah Thomas, head of global innovation for Genesis Rehab Service, said at the conference. “By embedding this technology into the garments, into the footwear, we truly feel we can improve adherence by being seamlessly integrating into the daily routine of our clients.”

According to a statement, Genesis Rehab Services will provide clinical validation for Sensoria’s technologies in rehab, activity monitoring, and fall detection scenarios. Genesis Rehab Services is one of the largest rehabilitation organizations in the US, and currently operates and staffs rehabilitation gyms in 46 states and the District of Columbia.

“We already have the software, the hardware, the cloud-computing components built, but we didn’t want to enter such a complex space as smart aging and health in general without a partner that can provide us with both clinical validation and market validation,” Vigano said.

Vigano said that the new company will function independently with its own dedicated team, and is expected to be up and running by Jan. 1, 2018.