Deployment of more biometric drug supply kiosks from Dispension backed by $3.49M grant, accelerator
Drug harm reduction campaigner MySafe Society has secured $3.49 million in funding to deploy biometric kiosks from Dispension Industries to provide controlled, safe quantities of pharmaceutical-grade opioids to eligible program participants as a way of preventing overdose deaths.
The funding is being provided by Health Canada through the Substance Use and Addictions Program (SUAP). According to MySafe Society Executive Director Dr. Mark Tyndall, it addresses the toxic drug supply problem, and reduces pressure on drug users to acquire money or drug through illegal or unsafe activities. The palm vein biometric authentication that backs Dispension’s Verified Identity Dispenser (VID) is core to the solution, according to the announcement.
The MySafe Society project launched in 2019 in downtown Vancouver, and after a successful pilot plans to roll the biometric kiosks out across the country.
Dispension Industries is also one of eight startups participating in the first ‘MedTech’ accelerator cohort from L-SPARK, which began in late-2020. The accelerator program gives Dispension pre-commercial access to a technology platform designed by Telus, Blackberry, Solace and the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) for connected IoT medical devices.
“We’re excited by the opportunity to validate our technology in the marketplace, particularly as the driving force behind this very important life-saving initiative,” says Dispension CEO Corey Yantha. “Canada continues to struggle with historic rates of fatal overdoses and MySafe is the most scalable way of addressing the overdose crisis head-on.”
“Through access to this technology, Dispension is well positioned to scale to address needs related to safely and securely dispensing a range of restricted products, including reaching underserved and remote communities,” says Leo Lax, executive managing director at L-SPARK. “We look forward to watching as Dispension scales its reach nationwide and internationally.”