Can Android tablets be used as medical devices

Discussion in 'Android Tablet Discussions' started by kamchatka, Mar 27, 2011.

  1. kamchatka

    kamchatka Member

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    I am in the hospital.(my wife delivered a baby boy). I saw all those monitors to measure various vital signs like heart rate, pulse rate, oxygen concentration, blood pressure. All these are done with a single monitoring devices.

    Since we are in a private nursing home, we have a room to ourselves. I saw the device and took a closer look. Seems like it was running windows ce. It has RJ 45 ethernet ports for network connectivity and proprietary ports for the sensors.

    Judging by the looks of the device, it seems expensive.

    Can an android tablet with appropriate sensors connected through usb and running appropriate software replace this kind of device.

    An Android 1.6, 7 inches tablet with VIA 8505 processor and 256 MB RAM and 1 gb of nand is very cheap to produce in large qty's. A single unit costs like $40 retail, if am not wrong. Add 3 usb ports and sensors that can read data and send it to the tablet where an app displays the information.

    Since such tablets are already wifi enabled you can connect them all to a central machine in the hospital.

    Hospitals in developing countries cannot afford expensive monitors for every bed, but theoretically this can be a cheaper solution.

    What do you guys think?

    By the way am from India and I know the situtations in public hospitals and I have seen patients suffer since the doctors can not afford to have monitors for every bed.

    Sent from my Samsung Tab using Android Tablet Forum App
     
  2. Aries on an Android

    Aries on an Android Member

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    in theory with customized firmware and drivers for the sensors it could work

    an in interesting project, that said modifying the drivers to work with android OS would be a bit tricky
     
  3. xaueious

    xaueious Administrator Staff Member

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    Out of reliability and security concerns, NO. Right now, shanzhai Android tablets are decently suited for non-critical applications.

    Not impossible, but none of the existing devices suit your needs. I would not trust a $40 Chinese tablet. If manufactured properly, they can be reliable, but it wont be $40, and most of the manufacturers are out there to make quick money on you, meaning that the devices wont last much more than a year before they break.

    It will take some Gandhian engineering to achieve. It comes down to a matter of trusting their business practices, and you are better off trusting your own people.

    I think a good alternative might be the XO laptop, which I think is actually being manufactured properly.
     
  4. dlzc

    dlzc Member

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    Something is going to have to change on the floor of intensive care. There are too many separate alarms, too many disparate systems. Were all devices networked (bluetooth / WiFi), entirely silenced, and alarms collected / prioritized / sorted / and made available by a central server, then yes, even a pocket phone could serve as a front end.

    As it is, "alarm fatigue" is costing lives.

    But in no way is a device that runs for a few hours on batteries, and subject to virus and such (including Angry Birds), suitable for life support.
     

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