Vigo leads discussion about digital therapy in the National Conversation festival LAMPA

Last Friday, on September 4th, Vigo participated in the Latvian National Conversation festival LAMPA, leading the discussion "A doctor in your pocket. Science fiction or reality?". The discussion was about digital therapy, its potential and current presence in Latvia. Vigo, a digital therapeutic for stroke rehabilitation, is one of the first MedTech companies in Latvia that offers digital therapy. Participants in the discussion were Jānis Šlēziņš, a neurosurgeon and Co-Founder of Vigo, Kaspars Gross, Customer Relations Manager at Datamed, Santa Batuhtina - Banga, a telemedicine enthusiast, Valts Ābols, Chairman of the Board of the National Children's Hospital, Head of the Association of the Large Hospitals, Roberts Feders, a cardiologist.

Healthcare industry is undergoing a rapid digitization. At the moment there are more than 300 000 digital applications worldwide that solve various health issues. For example, a UK based company Babylon partially performs the duties of a general practitioner and is able to determine the course of the treatment based on reported symptoms. In the discussion about digital therapy, the participants talked about how such applications will soon partially replace the duties of doctors and medical professionals. In Latvia digital therapy is still a complete newcomer, yet it has a great potential.

A good example is Vigo and digital stroke therapy. Due to the limited amount of human resources, medical personnel and space in rehabilitation centers, stroke survivors are unable to receive sufficient rehabilitation and sometimes don't receive it at all. Often times it is simply too expensive, and most are unable to cover rehabilitation costs for themselves or their loved ones. This creates a global problem. Not only is this a problem in Latvia - the same issue is observed in just about every country. What is more, stroke is one of the most common causes of death in the world. Therefore, digital therapy can serve as an effective tool in stroke therapy, as it can fill the gap between demand for stroke rehabilitation and the supply that is currently limited.

NRC Vaivari starts using Vigo to treat stroke survivors

Application Vigo has reached the largest rehabilitation center in Latvia, National Rehabilitation Center Vaivari (NRC Vaivari), where it will begin using Vigo to treat stroke survivors. Digital therapy is something new for them, and NRC Vaivari medical specialists will be testing the program together with their patients, looking for ways to create the best user experience and make according improvements together with the Vigo team. The Vaivari medical team involved includes occupational therapists, physiotherapists and functional therapists. At first one Vigo package will be used to treat patients with similar functional disturbances. Vigo will be especially useful on weekends, since that's when physiotherapists are not present in the rehabilitation center. Therefore NRC Vaivari stroke patients will be able to continue with rehabilitation uninterrupted which is especially important during the first year post stroke.

Rehabilitation post stroke - should be started immediately

Stroke patients go to Vaivari post acute stroke phase where they begin rehabilitation. Patients are assigned rehabilitation accordingly by a physical and rehabilitation medical doctor. Patients that are in the dynamic observation have the opportunity to apply for rehabilitation by contacting the appropriate program coordinator. To find out more about acute care and rehabilitation options, read in our article "What are the options for stroke rehabilitation?". The goal with rehabilitation is to regain speech, cognitive, motor or sensory functions that the stroke patient may have lost. Beginning rehabilitation in a timely manner is key - it should be started as soon as possible.

Rehabilitation services paid by the state in NRC Vaivari can be received by:

  • Patients with functional limitations after consulting with a physical and rehabilitation medical doctor;
  • Patients that require dynamic monitoring due to chronic dysfunction after a rehabilitation course in NRC Vaivari.

NRC Vaivari is a nationally recognized object of importance for medical rehabilitation, health and social care, education and science, the largest medical institution of this type in Latvia. One of the main fields NRC Vaivari specializes in is the second stage of medical rehabilitation. NRC Vaivari medical, technical and professional base is at a high enough level to be able to fully provide a wide range of medical services.

Vigo was developed in collaboration with doctors from Vaivari Rehabilitation center. All exercises and exercise sets found in Vigo application are created together with their physiotherapists and other medical specialists. Therefore we are very glad that Vigo has returned to and become useful to our partners, where they can use Vigo as an assistant in stroke rehabilitation.