Friday, December 31, 2010

The Cellphone As a Platform in Healthcare for low cost ultrasound scanning

Mobisante is one example of a company that is building a specialized medical device on top of a smartphone. It has developed software that allows a Windows Mobile smartphone to connect to an ultrasound probe via USB, in effect turning it into a fully functional, portable ultrasound system. It uses the computing power of the phone to process and render images, and the built-in cellular or Wi-Fi radios to transmit data. The result is a system that is extremely portable, connected, and affordable, which brings ultrasound imaging within reach of more than 70% of the population that doesn’t have access to it today.

This is a fascinating example of how clever companies are using consumer technology to make healthcare much more affordable and available. This would be perfect for developing countries like India, and would make sophisticated medical imaging accessible in every village ! The tragedy is that it will never be possible to use this innovation in India. The PNDT Law would not allow it !

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