João Silva, Pedro Brandão and Rui Prior, all from IT and the University of Porto, received the Best Paper Award at the 3rd International Special Session on Smart Medical Devices, eHealth Systems, and Machine Learning on Medical Data (SmartMedDev), for their work “Modular Health Kiosk based on Web Technologies”. The event was held last February 21-23 in Porto, as part of the 10th International Conference on Health Informatics - HealthInf 2017.
According to the research team, “This award represents the recognition of the quality and relevance of our work, and is a nice incentive to keep improving it”.
The health kiosk is a self-service unit where patients can measure some of their vital signs prior to a consultation or on a routine basis. The measured data is sent to an electronic health record for analysis by health professionals and for showing the patients their progression.
The automation of the collection procedures may free up human resources for other tasks, allow wide scale screenings in the population at very low marginal costs, and take basic healthcare to places where it is currently unavailable. However, this requires a significant investment in usability aspects requires, in order for the kiosks to be autonomously used by persons of all ages and with widely varying degrees of familiarity with technology. It also requires modularity and ease of reconfiguration for different usage scenarios and sets of data to collect.
“We believe that health kiosks will become to health monitoring, what ATM´s are to banking”, said Rui Prior.