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:Mobile Health Applications
Victor Miclovich Appfrica Labs firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com November 13, 2009
1 Remote Medical Diagnosis 2 Anatomy of our RMD tool 3 Costs, Costs, Costs 4 Backend and Interoperability 5 Assignments of tasks to the team
cialize open source products3 . It is during the lectures that we shall look at snippets of code. 1 An account on GitHub will be set up for this project. For versioning of content we shall use 2 Git4 2
Remote Medical Diagnosis
Remote medical diagnosis is deﬁned as the 4 identiﬁcation of the illnesses of a person without the beneﬁt of a formal medical examination. But it is better to put it as Abstract ”an identiﬁcation by a physician who has not himself fully examined the patient”. This paper described the research that is unRMD is an area with a lot of promise and has derway in the ﬁeld of remote medical diagbeen called many names from ”telemedicine” nostics. I have chosen to use PyS601 because to ”mobile health”. of Python’s agility and ease of use as a programming language. Over these series of paThis small article is to open up the minds pers I shall be going through the developmenof this group. I hope you guys get more ideas tal overview of the RMD2 under Python; they and encouragement5 . shall describe the technologies we shall use 3 as a team. And probably this shall be open like servicing and provision of deployment 4 sourced. There’re still good ways to commerThose that know SVN can still use it; there’s a
Python for S60 2 Remote Medical Diagnostics
great plugin called svn-git that allows you to migrate SVN repositories to git. 5 try to get as many S60 phones... not just Nokia,
Anatomy of our RMD tool
This is an overview of how a person in the ”ﬁeld” can use this tool. Some MIT6 students designed Moca which is a platform that does a similar thing but on the Android platform. We are doing one that is based on the Symbian OS but using Python. We shall add more features as the development continues.
Alice may want to take a sound recording of the patient’s cough... chest murmurs can signify heart disease and many other human ”bugs”. She may also prefer to take a video recording while documenting her fears and suggestions to a distant physician.
The TechnoRMD8 should have a sense of location... this is to save Alice time, she This is a tool with great promise to Devel- should focus on just taking the necessary oping nations and Developed ones too. details. The application (TechnoRMD) should All a person in a really remote area has to do is do the rest. In essence, TechnoRMD will have have a phone with him; a smart phone is pre- an LBS9 feature.. ferred to just the SMS-Voice-only-type phones. With this phone, the user can type out a problem or issues of concern such as: • Name of person • Age • weight • sex • temperature readings • etc. In addition to that list, the user (in many cases, this could be a nurse), may have to take pictures of aﬀected areas or the diseased body part7 . Palpations and colorings say a lot in the medical world. The pictures could be of eyes... the color of the pupils, the constrictions of the iris. Medical data is immensely rich and inaccuracy can cause many problems or worsen the existing ones. Let us call this user or nurse Alice; this is for reasons that may help simplify ambiguity and the gravity of the problems this can solve.
Samsung has got some, just do some investigation 6 Massachusetts Institute of Technology 7 this could be the skin around a malignant patch on a breast
Costs, Costs, Costs
Costs are one of the most important issues in the build of this application. But I am not referring to ﬁnancial costs. Well, maybe just a bit. But according to certain laws10 , I am sure this venture is viable. Back to the important concepts here. The cost that I refer to here are technological costs: such as the cost of bandwidth in terms of reliability. We are seeing and being witnesses to the rates of data transfer almost doubling or trippling... the monetary costs are almost down11 . Low Internet costs rules out the weight that ”Costs” has here. So that leaves me with only addressing the
For want of a better name, I think we should call this venture/tool something like TechnoRMD 9 Location Based Service 10 Moore’s law:The processing power of a microchip doubles every 18 months. Corollary:compters become faster - and the price of a given level of computing power halves - every 18 months. This just means that the costs are going to go down signiﬁcantly. 11 Orange Telecom, for example lets a customer with an Internet enabled phone, surf the Internet at the cost of less than a soda which is less than $0.5
reliability of the connections to all forms of ”Internet-Data connectivity” such as: • GPRS • USB tether • Broad band Wimax12
3. Multi-modal transfers: this application should allow the Symbian phone access to all possible Internet ”access”... Multimodal just means many modes and that means we can use all options that the device supports: • GPRS
• Wi-ﬁ over BroadBand • etc. In many remote places in Africa, connectivity is still not that good. So this leaves us to use interesting techniques. Some of which I got from Moca app’s design. So what do we do to ensure a reliable data connection and data transfers: 1. Synchronization: this refers to the use of existing storage of the Phone. That’s just a database, right? So, we shall now start thinking of solutions that give us cheap and reliable storage. Also, we have to embed a background listening service that should check cellular coverage and as soon as the it is available, data is uploaded.
• Wi-ﬁ (when close to a free-public wiﬁ ) • SMS and MMS (the textual data can be sent using SMS ) • USB tether (this just means, you can connect to a PC or laptop with Internet access, and just have your cached data sent)
Backend and Interoperability
For this app to work well enough. We shall use a three-tier type design. A three tier is a client-server architecture in which the user interface14 , functional process logic, computer 2. Packetization: the medical data I de- data storage and data access are developed scribed earlier is pretty heavy and so this and maintained as independent modules, most 15 cause the data transfer or upload to a often on separate platforms. . server to take some time... and think of This is the design pattern that we shall use. the number of individuals that might be in line waiting their turn for ”inspection” by The client side is the interface on your phone; Alice... Yeah, I know that look, they are this is can include stuﬀ like a couple of forms so frustrated if Alice’s phone has got is- (single text dialogs), popup-menus and lots of sues. So we can design several algorithms other stuﬀ. But, by now you should know that that will locally queue all this data of dif- the mobile device is really ”LIMITED”... I ferent individuals before sending it oﬀ. So should be shouting this loud. Alice can go on with her even if there’s no But being limited does not mean that the design should be fake! or so uncool! The client cellular coverage13 . will never communicate directly to the data
WIMAX: Wireless Inter-operable Microwave access This will take some more ”tech” stuﬀ to put down; this involves IP programming, SSH programming for security, playing with data protocols in order to boost eﬃciency and reliability.
what we see) This deﬁnition is got from Wikipedia; there are some cool drawings, check them out. Just search for n-tier or three tier
Figure 1: This is an image of a 3 tier system tier or database. It will use a server that will be running OpenMRS16 .
Assignments of tasks to the team
We shall have this task of setting this app up compartmentalized. In the following ways: 1. Team lead 2. User Experience Designer 3. UI designers... about two of them can do. 4. And other coders!
OpenMedical Record System is a well development system that supports stuﬀ that deals with medical data