Wednesday, February 13, 2008

UC Berkeley Researching Devices

The Center for Information Technology in the Interests of Society (CITRIS) at the University of California campuses (Berkeley, Davis, Merced, and Santa Cruz) is involved in health IT research. Studies on exchanging medical records and developing and using IT for telemedicine are ongoing.

John Canny at UC Berkeley and his researchers are working on integrating diagnostic medical devices with network technologies in an all-in-one device. A device developed in the current research program monitors EKGs, EMG (back muscle activation), GSR (galvanic skin response—a stress reducer), chest sounds, temperature, and movement.

The researchers want to see the all-in-one device provide longitudinal monitoring for the early warning of more serious conditions. As a Bluetooth device, the goal will be to gather data without network connectivity for daily upload to another Bluetooth device. But at the same time be able to communicate with specific cell phones from Bluetooth for real-time monitoring.

The next step for UC Berkeley is to find partners to explore home and clinical applications for the device by developing data analysis and visualization tools for these applications. The research program is specifically interested in home wellness monitoring, using telemedicine in developing regions, and crisis reporting and analysis.