AQUA was developed at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre to solve the challenge of managing the quality assurance needs of a large and highly active radiation therapy department. Human factors and user experience experts helped establish the interface that powered the web-based platform.
With the de-risking from practical, daily use at Princess Margaret and the steps towards productization, making the business case for AQUA as a commercial product was easy. It was commercialized through a start-up company called Acumyn to help bring this solution to cancer centres around the world.
Moving from a piece of software successful for a single department to a global platform required further investments and refinements, and Techna continued to work with the start-up company, providing services to help the company get off the ground and launch AQUA at other sites.
ISO 13485 certification was one of the first steps, crucial for software that will be used in a medical context. Obtaining this certification was aided by expertise and project management from Techna, establishing the operating procedures and quality management system used by the company.
Software development expertise was also provided by Techna, helping Acumyn to ramp up operations rapidly and to continue to add features to AQUA—such as the ability to automatically pull data from networked detectors and QA devices—while they built their in-house staff. Techna also helped provide finance and administration services, another area where the flexibility of accessing expertise on an as-needed basis is highly valued by an agile start-up such as Acumyn, especially when it can come in the form of part-time positions.
As AQUA approached its official launch, Acumyn reached out to Techna to help with the marketing and communications needs. Techna’s Marketing & Communications team created a new website for Acumyn, including developing infographics to explain AQUA’s function. The Techna team also helped write the user manuals for the software.