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June 14, 2017

New app helps moms and nurses manage breastmilk

The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania’s Intensive Care Nursery began testing new app Keriton last month. The app supports new moms of and nurses working with babies in critical conditions. Keriton allows for easy tracking of breast milk inventories, which saves caretakers a significant amount of time. Time they can now spend with their critically ill new-born.

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New app Keriton should save new moms and nurses a lot of time. Nurses in the U.S. spend around 13.000 hours every year managing breast milk for 500.000 critically ill babies. Managing breast milk includes tasks like monitoring, labeling, printing, and logging infant-specific nutritional management, no feeding involved. New moms, on the other hand, have to log from which breast they have last pumped and how much they could produce. Obviously not something a mom wants to think about when their baby is sick.

Logging breast milk

So why does managing breast milk take up so much time? Breast milk in hospitals has to go through 16-20 manual validations. This process includes verifying the baby’s and mother’s identification, updating expiration dates and checking inventory. A mom produces up to 16 bottles of milk daily, which means that time spend on logging all those bottles really adds up. Especially when it’s taken in consideration that most nurses take care of not just one ICN baby, but three.

So why use breast milk? Why not just use infant formula? Well, research shows that babies are charged faster and have better health outcomes when they are fed their mother’s breast milk — hence the labelling of the bottles.

Saving time

Keriton aims to improve breast milk management, to make sure nobody is spending more time than necessary on logging breast milk. It offers four features:

  • Klassify – a real-time dashboard which allows lactation nurses to track pumping patterns to identify problems early.
  • Konnect – which allows lactation consultants to chat with new moms, send reminders about pumping, and answer questions mom’s might have.
  • Klick – a media sharing platform, which allows nurses to send photos to moms of their babies at pumping time.
  • Kare – automates inventory management, expiration management, validates every single action on a bottle and auto-generates an audit trail for every bottle.

Keriton is an integrated system which operates on a HIPAA-compliant server. This makes it possible for moms to automatically send information to the hospital.  App inventor Vidur Bhatnagar is working with Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania’s Intensive Care Nursery to further test the app and provide feedback. The company has now raised over a million dollars.

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