Elasaf Gilbert (7th from left) and the team that won the “Smart Bedside Challenge” Health Hackathon
Third-year MSIH student, Elasaf Gilbert, was part of the team that won Israel Innovation Institute’s “Smart Bedside Challenge” Health Hackathon. Along with his team, Elasaf, who earned his undergraduate degree in engineering, placed 1st out of the 16 teams competing in the hackathon.
Taking place at MSIH’s teaching hospital, Soroka University Medical Center, Elasaf and his three teammates, interviewed medical staff on the wards to find which issues could be solved with the application of technical know-how. Very quickly they discovered that falling is a dangerous complication in hospitals.
“Patients often get out of bed before they are ready,” explains Elasaf. “This can result in them falling – which can severely aggravate their condition and greatly prolong recuperation.”
Together with his team, Elasaf came up with a plan to automatically monitor the patient, before lowering the bed to a standing position.
“Using an Arduino (an inexpensive electronic controller), I wrote code and we wired sensors to the bed to monitor the patient’s condition. After half an hour, provided the patient’s vital signs were in order, the bed would lower itself automatically to a sit-up position, allowing the patient to get up safely and easily.”
More than 100 medical staff, academics, and other disciplines (computer science, engineering, medicine, design, etc.) participated in the hackathon. During 30 straight and strenuous hours, 16 teams met under the guidance of 24 mentors to develop their projects.
Other ideas presented included applications to improve patient service, a remote patient activity monitoring system, a smart device controlled by a smartphone, a walking simulator that prevents pressure sores, and more.
Plans for the Future
“Soroka Hospital plans to further develop the project and implement it in some of its wards,” explains Elasaf. “Once we complete the prototype the plan is to test it on a specific ward – probably neurology – which seems to have the most incidents of patients falling. This has become something of a pet project for me,” he adds. “I intend to push it through to the end.”
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