Killaloo firm develops new ‘smart showerhead’ technology which can reduce the risk of Legionnaires’ disease.

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A Killaloo company has been hailed for the creation of new ‘smart showerhead’ technology which can reduce the risk of Legionnaires’ disease.

Multi-award-winning manufacturer Medi-Shower has developed the cutting-edge new product with R&D support from Invest Northern Ireland.

Designed to meet the high requirements for hygiene within the healthcare sector the new technology reduces the risk of waterborne infection from bacteria that can build up due to poor design and stagnant water that resides in the hose and showerhead after use.

Des Gartland, Invest NI’s North West Regional Manager said: “Medi-Shower has developed a product with significant global potential.

“With our assistance the company has improved efficiencies in its shower head product by designing a colour-coded insert to stop the build-up of lime scale.

“This support has made its design one of the most hygienic on the market and is proven to reduce harmful bacteria such as Legionella and MRSA by up to 99.99 per cent.

“This is an excellent example of a local company investing in research and development to open up global market opportunities.

“The project has led to the development of new skills in leading-edge design within the Derry firm and helped the company position itself for growth, particularly in the US and European markets.”

Medi-Shower has liaised closely with Legionella experts in Great Britain and a senior adviser to the World Health Organisation to ensure the product would be endorsed by leading experts within the healthcare field.

Invest NI has offered Medi-Shower support of £141,590 towards a total investment in R&D of £300,000.

The company also used Invest NI Innovation Vouchers in the initial development of the product and technical guidance on intellectual property protection.

Christie Allen, Managing Director of Medi-Shower said: “Our market research confirmed that in developing this new smart showerhead technology, we would fill a market gap in hospitals, nursing homes and hotel chains.

“Investing in R&D has proved immensely important for our business. The new technology has been vital in helping us to increase our exports most recently in the Nordics, where we have signed a contract worth over £2million with Pall Medical. Our entire range of shower heads will now be installed in many hospitals across the Nordics.

“The support of Invest NI has been hugely important in helping us to bring it to market. We wouldn’t have been able to convert an idea into a product and sell as quickly into international markets without its support and encouragement.”

Invest NI’s R&D support is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth & Jobs Northern Ireland (2014-2020) Programme.