• SFU News
  • News
  • Medical tech start-up takes home $30K Coast Capital Venture Prize

Awards and recognition

Medical tech start-up takes home $30K Coast Capital Venture Prize

April 14, 2022

A medical device company created by an SFU alumnus is working to advance the development of its vital sign monitoring device—next steps that will benefit from the company’s winning $30,000 in prizes as the Top Venture in SFU’s 11th annual Coast Capital Venture Prize competition.

ODEN Health Solutions Inc.’s goal is to provide life-saving assistance for everyone regardless of social or economic situation or geographical location. Its inaugural product, entering the next phase of its development, is a self-contained wearable device that is capable of monitoring vital signs of users, detecting opioid overdoses, and notifying emergency services of the overdose in order for the user to receive life-saving treatment. 

Founder & CEO Alex McGovern developed the idea for ODEN while completing his degree in Biomedical Engineering at SFU, and received support to develop the concept through key programs within the Charles Chang Institute for Entrepreneurship, including Mentor MeeteCoop and ongoing support through the Coast Capital Venture Connection incubator program

"Winning the 2022 Coast Capital Venture Prize is a big step in ODEN’s journey towards commercialization. This win provides recognition and validation of all the hard work our team has been putting in, as well as confirmation that the problem we are solving is not only important to us, but important to the whole community,” says McGovern.

“The prize dollars and services will allow us to invest in further growth, attract investment, and help us prepare our product for release, adding to the momentum ODEN has already accomplished and help us to achieve our goal of healthcare equality.”

Venture Connection Mentor-in-Residence Doug Fast has been coaching ODEN since 2020. On Alex’s abilities as an entrepreneur, Fast offers, “Entrepreneurship can be somewhat of a mystery for engineers who are more accustomed to wrestling with the laws of physics than mapping the needs, wants, and desires of customers, but Alex has taken it all in stride and kept on learning and advancing.  I believe he’s poised to make a significant difference in the lives of individuals suffering from substance use disorder.”

The Venture Prize competition is structured to engage a diverse group of competitors and this year was no exception.  Ventures ranged from sustainable fashion accessories to window-washing robots with applications from mixed teams of students, staff, alumni and faculty founders, representing all eight of SFU’s faculties.  

For more on the competition and its winners, click here.