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Posted on Jan 13, 2015 in News | 0 comments

How do you try and stop Ebola? There might be an app for that…


The spread of Ebola has been a constant fear among the international community. In a bid to try and abate the spread of the disease, health officials are launching the #isurvivedebola app as part of a wider media campaign called #TackleEbola. The app allows survivors of the Ebola outbreak to share stories about the challenges and hardships they faced while combating this deadly disease and aims to put a human face on the condition. Survivors in the past have been stigmatized, which the campaign hopes to eliminate and cast these figures as heroes who may allow for better leadership in the community to fight the spread.

As well as sharing stories, the app would also collect data to allow health personnel to better treat this condition. It is hoped that by spreading key information about the condition via various channels, the campaign can achieve the critical task of stopping the outbreak from spreading further.  “As the global UN lead for the Social Mobilization Pillar of the Ebola response in West Africa, UNICEF is at the helm of efforts to stop transmission by working with national governments and partners to educate the public in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea about how to protect themselves, their families, and their communities from the virus. #ISurvivedEbola is reinforcing our efforts by providing this information in multiple, highly entertaining forms, including through the testimonies of actual survivors,” commented an UNICEF spokesperson in the media release 

Source & photo:

by Dr Raffy Halim
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Posted on Jan 7, 2015 in News | 0 comments

Using a “selfie” as a medical screening tool: Eyenaemia

A company founded by two medical students at Monash University in Melbourne have found an interesting use of taking a photograph of yourself, which is otherwise colloquially known as a ‘selfie’. The team used the data from the image to analyse the conjunctiva of the subject via an app and compare against a database to assess the risk of anaemia.

The team hopes that their solution will help in the diagnosis and treatment of the 2 billion people in the world that suffer from anaemia.

Their ingenious application of this modern trend has caught the attention of many people, including that of Bill Gates, who recently wrote about the project on his blog. The pair have also won numerous awards for their innovation.

So the next time you are at your medical clinic, you may have to take a selfie for medical reasons!

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Posted on Dec 16, 2014 in News | 1 comment

Take a ‘Peek’ into the future and help make it a reality

Peek into the future


In the future, your next eye exam may just happen right from a smartphone. We have previously mentioned the Portable Eye Examination Kit, or ‘Peek’; a device that could make that future a reality. The team previously worked on a suite of apps to help with examining the eye with a mobile phone and recently have turned their attention at improving the equipment used to do so. The device is a clip-on camera adapter for your phone that allows it to become a low cost ophthalmoscope and retinal camera.

‘Four out of five people who are blind, don’t need to be blind,’ states Dr Bastawrous, while explaining that many people in remote locations lack basic access to eye care that would help preserve their vision.

The group working on the project are working with Médecins Sans Frontières and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness to use the device in the field and helping remote communities.

To help make the project a reality, the team have turned to crowd-sourcing to help fund the industrial design and manufacture of the device. For £60 you can choose to buy a Peek for yourself or to give one to a charitable project. Either way, you can help make the future of eye care a reality.

Crowdsourcing campaign:


TED Talk:


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Posted on Jul 3, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Google Fit: Android’s answer to Health Kit

Google I/O came and went last week and one of the expected announcement came labelled “Google Fit”. This story may sound similar to our previous post outlining Apple’s Health Kit, to which comparisons will undoubtedly be made.

Google Fit will provide a an integrated platform on the Android OS for it to communicate with a variety of mHealth tracking devices. Unlike Apple, Google has not revealed a central “app” that collates all the data. Rather, it is trying to make a standard platform that would allow devices from different manufacturers to “play nice” with their apps.

Thus far, a whole host of companies have signed on to the initiative, such as Nike, Addidas and the ever popular RunKeeper.

Regardless of the approach, it is encouraging to see the world’s two biggest smartphone platforms integrating health tracking features as a key part of their OS.


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Posted on Jun 16, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Health tracking built in with your new smartphone: a new revolution?

WWDC is a big annual event for all things related to Apple and this year it certainly did not disappoint. We have previously covered many mHealth technologies that are paired to the now ubiquitous smartphone but after the main keynote of the event, it seems that Apple, one of the world’s biggest consumer electronics companies, is ready to throw it’s weight behind mHealth as well.

We previously reported the rumours in February where it was suggested that Apple was incorporating Health related features into iOS. Now, the announcement is official with news of HealthKit. The software platform will be built right into iOS, allowing it to “know” the type of data being shared by different sensor hardware. This should shift the brunt of the user side software development work form device manufacturers, allowing them more resources to produce innovate mHealth hardware.

Not to be outdone, rumours have also started emerging of a similar platform being developed by Google for its Android platform. Rumoured to be dubbed “Google Fit”, the still unannounced platform is expected to be revealed at Google’s developer event, I/O which starts later this month on June 25th.

The wave of activity from the major players in the smartphone industry to back mHealth initiatives may be the beginning of another mHealth revolution. This time, it looks like population at large will be the main beneficiary.

News article by Dr Raffy Halim
–  Apple:
– Engadget:

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