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Perth Biodesign for MedTech winner 2019, VeinTech, has taken out the $10,000 Medtronic Prize in the prestigious 2021 MedTech Actuator Origin pitch competition.

VeinTech's device, the VeinWave, aims to reduce the failure rate of first pass cannulation (inserting a needle into a vein), hence reducing staff and patient stress and saving valuable time and hospital resources.

The MedTech Actuator Origin program is one of the premiere pitching competitions for Medical Technology startups, with entries from across the Asia-Pacific region. Applications were whittled down to a semi-finalist pool of 20 start-ups. After a rapid-fire round of 60-second pitches, twelve finalists were chosen to pitch in the final Gala Event, run online for the first time in its seven-year history.

VeinTech came together through Perth Biodesign’s flagship 7-month MedTech program, where they were also the winning team at the end of 2019. The company was founded by Dr. Katherine Arenson (Chief Medical Officer), an emergency physician at Armadale Hospital, Nik Bappoo (Chief Technology Officer), a biomedical engineer and PhD candidate at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research and The University of Western Australia, and Nick Buckley (Chief Executive Officer), a physiotherapist and PhD candidate at the Telethon Kids Institute and Curtin University. When asked how she felt about her recent win, Dr. Arenson said she was “elated, especially considering the strength of the competition”.

“Struggling to find veins is something that I live and breathe every work day, and for years I have been frustrated by the lack of easy-to-use assistive devices – so I leapt at the chance to develop my own!” When questioned on what plans VeinTech have to utilise the $10,000 prize money, Dr. Arenson said “we have recently hit the milestone of a proof-of-concept device. This funding will help to progress our invention over the next few months to a clinical prototype that can be used in human trials, the next step in getting our device into hospitals and benefiting patients”.


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