Navigation Links
Open source mobile technology software reinventing health care in developing countries
Date:4/28/2009

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (April 28, 2009) Dr. Joel Selanikio's innovative technology is not only saving lives, it is changing the face of the public health system around the world. Merging his expertise in the areas of computer science, medicine and public health with his business partner's background in technology, spurred the development of a sustainable mobile software tool to aid in disease surveillance and the collection of public health data in developing nations. Officially established as an electronic data collection standard by the World Health Organization, Selanikio's EpiSurveyor is now the most widely adopted open source mobile health software in the world.

The Lemelson-MIT Program today named Dr. Joel Selanikio as the recipient of the 2009 $100,000 Lemelson-MIT Award for Sustainability in recognition of his accomplishments in public health and international development. Selanikio, co-founder of DataDyne and assistant professor of pediatrics at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington D.C., will accept the award and present his innovation to the public at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) during the Lemelson-MIT Program's third-annual EurekaFest, a multi-day celebration of the inventive spirit, on June 24-27.

"Joel's inventiveness and ability to leverage his unique, multi-discipline background is impressive," states Theresa Bradley, team leader of the World Bank's Development Marketplace, whose organization nominated Selanikio for the award. "He is a thought leader in the area of mobile health for developing countries and is dedicated to improving global public health by creating sustainable technologies that are scalable, affordable and practical."

Improving Methods of Data Collection

Selanikio became devoted to improving data collection in public health while working as a U.S. Public Health Service officer at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). He found that existing means of data collection for disease surveillance and immunization programs were inefficient health workers carried hundreds of thousands of sheets of paper to the field, a process that was inconvenient, expensive and environmentally unsound. Moreover, after the paper forms were filled out, the data would need to be manually entered into a computer system for analysis, which could take more than a year; this paper-based system severely hampered the ability for health organizations to evaluate the success of their programs and move quickly in battling disease outbreaks.

With the proliferation of mobile phones and personal digital assistants (PDAs), Selanikio recognized the potential of handheld computers in dramatically improving the data collection process. "I set out to develop software that was extremely simple to use; taking the skills, expertise and capacity that previously came with hiring a consultant and instead, put the necessary tools into the hands of the actual public health officer, nurse or physician," states Selanikio. "I was determined to make the software both free and open source, as not to raise barriers to data collection."

EpiSurveyor: Lowering the Barriers to High-Quality Data

It is uncommon for most citizens in developing countries to own desktop or laptop computers, but the use of mobile technology continues to grow with 64 percent of all mobile users living in developing nations. Selanikio and partner, technologist Rose Donna, formerly of the American Red Cross, co-founded DataDyne, a nonprofit devoted to information and communication technologies for public health and development, to capitalize on the prevalence of this hardware as the platform for EpiSurveyor. This free software package, which can be downloaded onto handheld mobile devices, allows health workers to become fully self-sufficient in programming, designing and deploying health surveys, eliminating the need for costly outside consultants, paper and manual data entry. EpiSurveyor enables full cycle data collection from surveillance of diseases affecting populations, to evaluating treatments, to monitoring the success of treatments in preventing outbreaks and improving health.

"Using EpiSurveyor on PDAs, and most recently on common mobile phones, allows the process of collecting essential data of every kind to happen more easily, cheaper, faster and at a higher quality," states Dr. Mark Grabowsky, medical officer for global health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "In Africa and across the globe, EpiSurveyor is enabling thousands of public health officials to have a clearer knowledge of priorities, successes, problems and the future path of public health."

Revolutionizing Global Public Health

It was once unheard-of for developing countries to collect their own national-level health statistics. This process is now becoming routine and economical thanks to the EpiSurveyor technology. In partnership with the World Health Organization and participating ministries of health, DataDyne and the United Nations Foundation and Vodafone Foundation Technology Partnership are currently training and equipping health workers in more than 20 sub-Saharan African countries with the tools to make smart decisions about critical public health issues, making it easier to combat deadly diseases and save lives.

Already, EpiSurveyor has had an enormous impact in Africa; playing a role in the hugely successful Measles Initiative for measles vaccination, which has helped reduce measles deaths by nearly 90 percent in Africa since 2000. In Zambia and Kenya, the EpiSurveyor software has streamlined the inoculation of children against measles, provided new information on HIV and even helped to contain a polio outbreak.

"Joel's achievements are a great example of a successful alliance between public and private institutions," states Joshua Schuler, the executive director of the Lemelson-MIT Program. "His innovative thinking combined with the support of the United Nations Foundation and Vodafone Foundation has not only strengthened the global public health system, but has transformed lives a true collaboration revealing the power of innovation."


'/>"/>

Contact: Julie Staadecker
jstaadecker@coneinc.com
617-939-8427
Lemelson-MIT Program
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Tennenbaum Encourages Shareholders to Vote the Blue Proxy for Tennenbaum Director Nominees at Online Resources Annual Meeting as Recommended by Riskmetrics/ISS and Proxy Governance
2. Seniors Invited to Learn About Fraud Prevention at SCAN Connections Resource Center on April 28
3. NursesNow International and GlobeMed Resources Announce Availability of Bilingual Mexican Nurses for US Hospitals
4. David Mack Joins Ameritox as Vice President for Human Resources
5. SCAN Health Plan Partners With Local Station ABC 15 to Provide Healthy Living Tips and Resources to Area Seniors
6. ACP releases new resource to help patients managing high blood pressure
7. Contract Drug Development Resource, goBalto, Launches New Web-Based Platform, goBalto.com
8. Genetic source of rare childhood cancer found; gene is implicated in other cancers
9. Lilly Names Susan Mahony Senior Vice President of Human Resources
10. Adult Well-Being Services Offers Valuable Resources for Caregivers
11. China Health Resource, Inc. Defers Implementation of Reverse Stock Split in Light of Continuing Market Volatility
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Open source mobile technology software reinventing health care in developing countries
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... February 24, 2017 , ... The narrative in “ ... Erik Schanssema ’s true account of his paramedic experiences. Schanssema describes the tragedies he ... and his attempts to overcome them. , Schanssema, initially unsure of the career path ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... February 24, 2017 , ... The International ... 7th annual “Imagine Me Beyond What You See” body image mannequin art competition. Selected ... will be showcased and the winner revealed at the 31st annual iaedp Symposium, March ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... February 24, 2017 , ... Congratulations to ... Elite division on February 12th. Ms. Esparza qualified into this prestigious status ... competition held in Las Vegas, Nevada. Frida is one of approximately 25 gymnasts ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... February 23, 2017 , ... The 89th ... the winner of the 2016 National Education Policy Center Bunkum Award. We invite you ... in 2016. , This year’s Bunkum winner is the Center for American Progress (CAP), ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... February 23, 2017 , ... ... first two episodes of WE TV’s “Mama June: From Not to Hot,” which will ... TV notable, “Mama” June Shannon, known to millions from the 2012 reality television series, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/23/2017)... LG Innotek hat heute die weltweit erste ... das 1,5-fache des 45-mW-Moduls der Konkurrenz. UV-C ... und 280 nm und eignet sich damit für Sterilisationsaufgaben. Es ... zerstört. Das Produkt von LG Innotek erzeugt UV-Strahlung im ... ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... -- ITL Limited, ( ASX: ITD ), an innovative diversified healthcare ... ended 31 December 2016 compared with the previous corresponding period. A ... here . Highlights ... Earnings per share of 2.2 cents (Dec 2015: 1.2 ... $15.7m; up 11%) Profit before tax of $2.12m ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... 2017 Research and Markets has announced the addition ... report to their offering. ... The latest research Menopause Drugs Price Analysis and Strategies - 2016, provides ... research answers the following questions: What are ... they positioned in the Global Menopause market? What are ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: