It’s not always the researchers and doctors who come up with the brilliant health and medical breakthroughs that can ultimately save lives. Members of the crowd play their part too via open innovation contests and hackathons.
From mobility problems among the elderly to fighting the spread of infectious diseases, lay people are increasingly tackling public health issues. Here are four examples that have been featured on IdeaConnection’s website.
The Tri-Tip Walking Cane: an ergonomic walking cane that alleviates common hand, wrist, shoulder and back pains associated with traditional walking canes. It was the winner of the Rite Aid Innovation Challenge.
Combating Dengue fever: an artificial intelligence platform to detect Dengue fever outbreaks months before they happen. It was created by a company called Artificial Intelligence in Medical Epidemiology (AIME). This algorithm-based approach analyzes public health data and data from sources such as previous outbreaks, wind speed, weather and a location’s proximity to water.
Foldit: an online crowdsource video game that encourages players to manipulate digital versions of proteins to create their optimum folded state. Determining the structure of proteins is vital to understand the mechanisms by which diseases are caused and develop. With this knowledge, therapeutics can be designed to combat them.
Botler: a Segway robotic concept to transport elderly patients and nursing home residents to where they need to go. It was the winner of the MIT Hacking Medicine Robotics Singapore 2017. The purpose of this hackathon was to devise new ways of using Segway’s Loomo bot to address elderly and medical care challenges in Singapore.