• En | Fr
  • Welcome
  • About
  • Awards
  • Apply
  • News
  • Support Us
  • Contact Us

Christopher D. McNamara

Location: Halifax, NS

Award: Innovation Award

Category: Emergency Health

Year: 2007

Innovation:

Mr. McNamara is the visionary and lead architect of Siren ePCR™ Suite, the worlds most used electronic reporting system for paramedics and other first responders. His system replaces unwieldy paper forms with a tablet computer, securely connected via a wireless intranet to hospitals and 911 dispatch systems. Read the News Release and Media Backgrounder for additional information.

News Release

Leading electronic patient care reporting system garners Nova Scotian a $10,000 Manning Innovation Award

Calgary, AB (September 19th, 2007) — Christopher D. McNamara is the visionary and lead architect of Siren ePCR™ Suite, the world's most used electronic pre-hospital reporting system. His computerized system, which replaces the unwieldy paper forms that paramedics and other first-responders must otherwise deal with, has won him a $10,000 Manning Innovation Award, sponsored by Katch Kan Limited.

McNamara founded Medusa Medical Technologies (Medusa) in 1998 in order to develop and commercialize his idea for a real-time patient data reporting system. The Siren ePCR™ system includes a rugged tablet computer with a touch screen that paramedics can easily use at the scene of an emergency or in the back of an ambulance while attending to a patient. An easy-to-navigate user interface allows paramedics to efficiently complete patient care reports and other essential forms.

The potential for the technology to improve patient care and increase operational efficiency is significant, given that the Siren ePCR™ system can be linked to hospital databases, 911 dispatch systems, electronic health records, and drug and protocol databases. Users in North America and the United Kingdom report that paramedics are getting ambulances back on the road faster because they are no longer held up with paperwork. Furthermore, emergency physicians are receiving legible and complete documentation on their patients.

The Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation

This year Foundation will award $165,000 in prize money. Four awards totalling $145,000 will go to leading Canadian innovators. Another $20,000 will go to Young Canadians chosen at the 2007 Canada-Wide Science Fair.

The Foundation was established in 1980 in the name of Alberta statesman, Ernest C. Manning, to promote and support Canadian innovation. Since 1982, the Foundation has presented $3.76 million in prize money through its annual awards program.

The 2007 awards will be presented at an awards gala on September 28th in Toronto, Ontario. The 2007 Manning Principal Award Winner will be announced September 25th.

A Media Backgrounder about the innovator and his work is available on the Foundation's website: www.manningawards.ca
For more information on the Foundation, contact Bruce Fenwick, Executive Director, 403-645-8288 or Nina C. Pudwell, Communications Coordinator, at 403-645-3006 or Nina.Pudwell@encana.com
For more information on the Siren ePCR™ Suite or Medusa Medical Technologies, visit www.medusamedical.com or contact award-winner Christopher D. McNamara at 902-488-5916 or cmcnamara@medusamedical.com

 

 

Media Backgrounder

$10,000 Manning Innovation Award, Sponsored by Katch Kan Limited Christopher D. McNamara, Siren Electronic Patient Care Reporting (ePCR)™ System

Who?

  • Christopher D. McNamara, BA, EMBA, Founder and Director of Medusa Medical Technologies (Medusa)
  • McNamara is the visionary and lead architect behind the Siren ePCR™ Suite

What?

  • Siren ePCR™ is a computerized system that replaces the paper forms that paramedics and other first-responders must typically complete. Also marketed as LIFENET EMS™, the system includes a rugged tablet computer with a touch screen. Users can input patient data for patient care reports, insurance consent forms, police reports, and other forms while at the scene of an emergency or in the back of an ambulance while attending to a patient.
  • Patient-monitoring devices, such as LIFEPAK® defibrillators/monitors, are connected to the Siren ePCR™ system so that heart rhythm, oxygen levels, blood pressure and other vital signs are recorded and automatically integrated into the patient care report.

Where?

  • Emergency medical services for over 60 million people employ the Siren ePCR™ Suite: Medusa's electronic patient care reporting technology has been implemented in Canada in Alberta and Nova Scotia; in 13 of the United States; in over 60 per cent of England; and, most recently, in continental Europe.
  • Medusa Medical Technologies is based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with additional personnel based in the United Kingdom.

When?

  • McNamara founded Medusa in 1998 in order to develop his electronic patient care reporting system.

Why?

"Paramedics don't like filling out paperwork," asserted Christopher D. McNamara, the visionary behind the world's leading pre-hospital electronic patient care reporting technology.

Dealing with paper forms at the scene of an emergency is an unwieldy and distracting, but necessary, frustration. It is not unusual for paramedics to jot notes on their gloves, a pillowcase or anything handy, and not to complete patient care reports until arriving at the hospital. Instead of getting back out on the road, ambulances are in stasis until the paperwork is done.

Siren ePCR™, McNamara's electronic reporting system, replaces pre-hospital paper forms with a tablet computer that is securely connected via a wireless intranet to hospitals and 911 dispatch systems. Users can write on the tablet with an inkless stylus, or touch "buttons" on the screen. The computer is portable and rugged-key features of a computer that bounces around in the back of an ambulance-and the surface can withstand disinfection so that blood and germs can be wiped away.

Siren ePCR™ has succeeded where other electronic reporting systems have failed, noted McNamara, mainly because the graphical user interface is easy for paramedics to navigate. The electronic forms are designed with emergency-responders' medical training in mind. "The approach before this was just to look at the paper form and try to computerize it," explained McNamara. This lead to impractical and "clunky user interfaces." "The clinical logic in the system wasn't there," he said.

Medusa has had positive feedback from Siren ePCR™ users in North America and the United Kingdom, who report that paramedics' documentation has improved, thereby increasing quality assurance and opportunities for medical research. Emergency doctors are also better prepared to receive patients, said McNamara, because "they're not looking at chicken scratches of paper work."

Another benefit of the system is that it can be linked to electronic health records or databases. In this case, paramedics can access information that will help them save lives, such as a list of a patient's allergies or the appropriate dosage of a drug to give a small child.

How?

A long-time medical first-responder for a number of volunteer organizations, Christopher D. McNamara knew that paperwork was the last thing emergency responders wanted to deal with. He recognized a critical, global health care need for a real-time, electronic documentation system. While completing his undergraduate degree at the University of King's College and Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia, he began developing his idea.

McNamara sought the input of paramedics and emergency physicians and hired a team of software developers to help him. Upon graduating in 1998, 23-year-old McNamara founded Medusa Medical Technologies in order to commercialize his innovation. The company office was relocated from his apartment to downtown Halifax, and with venture capital and funding from the National Research Council of Canada and the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Medusa tested and improved their revolutionary system.

Emergency medical services in Tulsa and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma became the first to adopt the Siren ePCR™ Suite in 2001; since then both cities have reported improved operational efficiencies and overall care.

By 2003 Medusa had joined forces with Medtronic Physio-Control Inc.-the US company that pioneered defibrillation technology-in order to market and develop electronic patient data systems. More recently Medusa has partnered up with Computer Sciences Corporation of California to install Siren ePCR™ Suite in 60 percent of ambulances in England.

"I'm happy that (Medusa was) able to create something that's making a difference," said McNamara. "The ultimate benefit…is knowing that it's out there serving the general public and improving care."

The Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation

This year the Foundation will award $165,000 in prize money. Four awards, totalling $145,000, will go to leading Canadian innovators. Another $20,000 will go to Young Canadians chosen at the 2007 Canada-Wide Science Fair.

The Foundation was established in 1980 in the name of prominent Alberta statesman, Ernest C. Manning, to promote and support Canadian innovators. Since 1982, the Foundation has presented $3.76 million in prize money through its annual awards program (www.manningawards.ca).