Hawaii start-up recognized by NASA for life-saving medical breakthrough

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - In their Kaka'ako office, the creators at iFirst Medical Technologies have developed a device that can analyze a patient's blood in just minutes – a device so groundbreaking it's been recognized as one of the most innovative in the country.

The company's iFirst Analyzer recently placed in the top 10 in NASA's iTech Challenge, which recognizes companies at the forefront of technological progress.

"I was ecstatic. It was just a really great moment," said Luke Joseph, CEO at iFirst Medical Technologies.

Their new device, as well as the app than accompanies it, works to analyze the blood's ability to clot.

"So we are able to see are those platelets functioning in those patients,' said Dr. Kevin Lye, Chief Medical Officer at iFirst Medical Technologies.

It's information doctors need in case of emergencies. With its device, iFirst says that when a trauma patient is in the ambulance, hospitals can get the information about their blood and what type of blood products they need before patients even arrive.

"In this case, they can have the blood products ready for the patient as soon as they arrive, so they don't have to wait," said Joseph.

The app uses an iPhone to transmit information about the blood to a hospital in about 10 minutes. In typical situations, that process can take as long as an hour.

"Time is life in a situation like this, so having that information about what the patient needs forwarded to the hospital, while the patient is in route to the hospital from the scene of trauma... That could be literally a life changer," said Dr. Lye.

The team at iFirst is now to planning to go to New York for a meeting with investors at the tech world's version of Shark Tank.

They say in addition to ambulances, their technology can be used on medical helicopters and on the front lines of the battlefield.

Copyright 2017 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.