The Indian Institute of Technology- Kharagpur (IIT-Kgp) has developed a device to allow doctors to remotely monitor patients in transit to hospitals. The AmbuSens device is envisaged to be fitted in ambulances with wireless sensors on the patient, monitoring various physiological parameters like ECG, heart rate, temperature and blood pressure.
It will be connected to the hospital through wireless Internet, and will help doctors advise on patient care. “There is no such technology at present that can help doctors at a hospital monitor the condition of the patient when the latter is on the move,” said Prof Sudip Misra, principal investigator in the project, department of computer science engineering.
“This technology will be a boon for referral patients who are transported from a hospital in remote area to a city hospital. Currently in such situations apart from family members, a medical technician accompanies a critical patient in an ambulance. But this technician has limited knowledge. Now, with doctors being able to monitor patients, they can suggest medical interventions. This can be lifesaving.”
The system currently leverages wireless on-body sensors, cellular (3G/4G) and wireless technologies (Wi-Fi) and cloud computing to achieve seamless real-time monitoring and management of patient data. In future the system will work even with irregular Internet connections. “We conducted successful field trials of the developed system at All India institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Bhubaneswar and BC Roy Technological Hospital (BCRTH), IIT-Kharagpur,” said Prof Misra.
Researchers are working to upgrade AmbuSens to ensure advance prediction of a likely emergency (like cardiac arrest).