The largest child health research institute in Australia, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI), is partnering up with technology upstart PainChek (ASX:PCK) to clinically test its smartphone pain assessment app, PainFaces.
MCRI, which is based in Melbourne, will be implementing the trial at its emergency department on approximately 100 children undergoing panful procedures.
PainChek’s pain score, based on facial recognition and assessment, will be compared with the results of two independent assessors using the FLACC (Face, Legs, Activity, Cries and Consolability) scale and Modified Behavioural Pain Scale (MBPS).
The FLACC scale is currently the international benchmark for pain assessment for children and individuals unable to verbally express levels of pain.
The PainChek® Infant PainFaces study will be led by Professor Franz Babl and Associate Professor Di Crellin, both of the MCRI, which operates a team if more than 1,200 researchers.
“The company is excited to be working with researchers from the world renowned MCRI,” PainChek Chief Scientific Officer, Professor Jeff Hughes said.
“Children who present to the ED often have underlying pain or need to go through painful medical procedures.
“The PainFace study will be looking to validate PainChek® as an accurate pain assessment tool that helps clinicians in the ED improve the quality of pain management for these vulnerable children,” he said.
The company has said the results of the trial will support applications for regulatory approval of PainChek® Infant’s App with the Therapeutics Goods Administration (TGA), CE Mark, Europe, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the USA.
PainChek’s Adult App, which is currently under annual contracts of more than 80 aged care facilities across Australia, is already clinically validated with TGA and CE Mark regulatory clearances as a Class 1 Medical Device.