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Personal Monitor Systems May Change Healthcare

Representation of a smartphone with personal health tracking capabilities.

The mHealth infrastructure can provide health information directly to patients and physicians via the Internet, and to researchers as aggregated databases.

Credit: Mobile Monday Michigan

University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH) researchers recently received U.S. National Science Foundation funding to develop the mHealth infrastructure, which incorporates computer informatics, smartphones, and energy-efficient and miniaturized electronics and sensors.

The mHealth infrastructure can directly provide health information to patients and physicians over the Internet and to researchers as aggregated databases.

In 2000, UAH researcher Emil Jovanov first proposed wireless body-area networks for health monitoring as a sensor system to integrate sensors on or in bodies and communicate through the Internet.

"This is a fundamentally different approach made possible by the advances in technology, and we are proud that the first paper on it came from UAH," Jovanov says.

Since 2000, the size and weight have shrunk and the sensor and communication technologies have advanced. "It is ubiquitous wireless communication anytime, anywhere that has brought tremendous change and will improve our lifestyles tremendously in the future," Jovanov says.

UAH's nursing lab also has a patient simulator, a human-like automated dummy that can reproduce the physiological effects of acute medical events. "For us this is very interesting, because we know exactly when these crises will happen and we can control the outcome of the event through the simulator," Jovanov says.

From UAHuntsville News
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