Digital Health Innovations

Digital Health Innovations – At HIT Consultant we are constantly thinking about the impact of digital technology on healthcare. As a result, we have compiled a list of innovations that have the potential to drive significant change in healthcare practice and practice in our series: HIT Consultant’s Pick Six Digital Health Innovations.

See our picks for May’s top six, including a fish-inspired genomic search engine, a smartwatch that turns your skin into a touchscreen, and a thermometer 20,000 times smaller than a single human hair.

Digital Health Innovations

The sequel to Disney’s “Finding Nemo” may not be out until June, but the genomic search engine, named in part after the fish story, is already here. The search engine for Google-powered genomics data was created by bioengineers at the University of California San Diego and is led by Professor Sheng Zhong. It is probably the first genomic search engine of its kind, designed to solve the most pressing and difficult pain point for researchers: accurately finding functional genomic data from online data sources.

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The new analysis system may enable researchers to determine the functions of certain parts of genomes related to the normal physiology or disease of specific organs and tissues. Unlike gene expression searches, GeNemo’s search is based on the matching process of functional genomic regions. Instead of just ‘search by text’, the new tool allows researchers to search within performance data. Finding binding patterns similar to those of a new article is just one example.

“If you think of functional genomic data files as video files, ‘text search’ is similar to searching for keywords in the title or description of a video file. The ‘content search data’ is similar to searching for a video clip with characteristics identified in the video itself’, Zhong explains in the press release.

It may be a memory of the beloved ViewMaster of the 1980s, but Google Cardboard has real potential in its paper quality. He even saved the life of one child – twin girls named Teegan – who were born with half a heart and half a lung.

Dr. Juan Carlos Muniz, a pediatric psychiatrist at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital (NCH) in Miami, FL, used the device to create a 3D image of a girl’s heart in preparation for a complex surgery to correct her condition. Working with an iPhone app called Sketchfab, the heart team was able to visualize Teegan’s heart in 3D easily and neatly from different angles using Cardboard. This gave Dr. Redmond Burke, chief of cardiac surgery at NCH, and his team carefully plan complex procedures, including the safest and most effective cut points.

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Prices for standard cardboard boxes start around $15, or you can build one for free using the plans on the site. The Muniz model only costs $20.00, meaning the price of the final product of the Teegan family. Cardboard doesn’t turn all apps into a 3D experience, as you need an optimized split screen for the device to create the effect. However, Google has made it easier for developers to create Cardboard apps, so its potential continues.

Who would have thought it was possible to turn your skin into a touchpad? Apparently, the students of the Future Inferences Group (FIG) at Carnegie Mellon University did, because they created just that with SkinTrack. The system uses an embedded electrode from the smartwatch band as well as a ring on your finger, which emits an electrical signal when you touch your wrist. The method works even if the skin is covered with clothes.

To be sure, this isn’t the first skin touchpad ever made, but FIG’s reviewers think it’s pretty effective. It greatly increases the surface area and thus the functionality of the smartwatch, removing the stress of the small screen for users. The potential of using the SkinTrack technology seems to be great, but FIG still has some work to do on the device, including reducing the bezel of the large battery, making it more fashionable.

SkinTrack recently made a public debut at the 2016 ACM CHI (Society for Computing Machinery on Human Factors in Computing) Conference in San Jose, CA.

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Can robots replace surgeons in the operating room? It is very possible. The National Medical Center and Johns Hopkins University recently tested the Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot (STAR) during an experimental pig surgery. The robot was only tasked with performing suturing during the procedure, but it is said to have performed very well, performing suturing more consistently than experienced doctors or other robotic assistants.

One of the advantages of STAR is that it uses a field-of-view camera to detect fluorescent signals embedded in tissue, allowing it to detect patches that may otherwise go unnoticed. Robots like STAR have the potential to free surgeons from repetitive tasks, allowing them to focus on the more complex aspects of surgery. However, the technology lacks the ability to perform many tasks independently, making it unlikely that a robot will replace human intervention in the OR anytime soon.

Many manufacturers would like to say that they have created the smallest medical device in the world, but it will be difficult to beat a thermometer 20,000 times smaller than a human hair. How do you build such a small device? You can’t, but it turns out that you can create some genetic material.

Researchers at the Biosensors and Nanomachines Laboratory at the University of Montreal have created a small thermometer by creating specific DNA structures that can fold and unfold at specific temperatures. More than 60 years ago, researchers found the DNA molecules that encode our genetic information that is visible when heated, and more recently they discovered that biomolecules are used as nanothermometers in living organisms to report changes in temperature by folding and folding.

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The thermometer has a range of 122°F and when the temperature reaches certain levels, the thermometer will emit signal-based signals. It is possible that one day a tiny device will be used to monitor temperature changes within a human cell. According to the report, the tiny device could one day be used to measure temperature in nanotechnology or monitor temperature changes between individual cells in the human body.

The idea of ​​implanting a computer chip in a person’s brain sounds like something straight out of a science fiction novel, but soon the idea could become a reality. In IBM’s Lab in Australia, researcher Stefan Harrer and his colleagues are building a system that analyzes brain waves in the hope of detecting epilepsy.

The system uses a neural network to analyze the data, which is similar to the system of neurons in the human brain. This system is similar to the neural network that recognizes photos on Facebook. This neural network runs on an experimental IBM chip called True North. The chip uses a parallel architecture so it is possible to run a neural network. He hopes Harrer will one day use the chip to create a wearable device that works with a brain implant that monitors seizures and alerts patients to seizures before they occur. . The alarm system may be years in the making, but with advances in AI growing every year, the future of wearable devices may be closer than we think.

Do you have digital health innovation in mind for this series? Contact a HIT Consultant here for further consideration. As always, there was so much to see and do at Health 2.0 that it’s hard to know where to start. And you know, if you are in one exit, you will miss 6 or 7 others. I had to make some difficult decisions, but I found some really good things to share with you. I will start my conference report by telling you about two companies that I really like and have been around for some time (which means they have completely developed products and customers) and one that is a newbie but offers a new approach to an old problem, weight loss. Each of them aims in their own way to facilitate the process of improving efficiency, something that we need a lot in health.

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Bright.MD is one of my favorite digital health companies. I’ve written (and filmed) about it before, so I was excited to get the chance to catch up with the founder and CEO of Health 2.0, Ray Costantini. Since we last reported, it has raised $3.5 million in funding and has grown from a total of 23 employees (with 12 open positions). They have also added many new delivery systems and now offer their services from coast to coast.

In short, this is what they do: they reduce the time a doctor spends on simple clinical problems from 15 minutes to 2.

What is it?? Is it good? The answer is yes, because they take the usual tasks from the doctor’s plate and allow him to use his knowledge and hard skills to analyze and write.

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