Saxon Infotech, Inc. (Columbia, MD), a strategic IT services consulting, development and staffing firm, announces today that it is making a significant investment of talent and resources to support and participate in a joint development effort with a major Institute of Technology and Research to develop and bring to market a cloud-based mobile telemedicine application. The company is targeting delivery in the second quarter of 2012.
“We see tremendous need for an effective mechanism to connect patients with doctors and other medical staff, especially for those residing in remote or rural areas,” said Shibu Jose, President of Saxon Infotech. “The new system we’re helping to create can make that happen by offering store-and-forward location-aware telemedicine services on a scalable, Internet-based P2P architecture.”
Until now, telemedicine systems typically link a small
number of hospitals providing healthcare services through dedicated satellite centers serving small segments of a population. However, for regions in both developed and developing nations lacking immediate access to specialist care, a much larger Internet-based telemedicine system would enable a larger pool of doctors and hospitals to collectively provide healthcare services to entire populations. The system being developed by Saxon Infotech and its partners attempts to meet that need by integrating multiple hospitals, mobile medical specialists, and rural mobile units or clinics into a large virtual enterprise.
In a prototype deployment already proving the concept in India, mobile health workers in the field carry portable instruments for measuring a patient’s vital health parameters such as blood pressure, temperature, heart and respiratory rates, blood sugar, weight and others. These devices are wirelessly connected to a smartphone or PDA, which securely uploads the data into the cloud. A context- and location-aware cloud-based scheduler matches the patient’s need — including the severity of any symptoms — to the nearest available doctor and notifies him or her by email or text message (SMS). The doctor can then evaluate the patient’s vitals, provide consultation by phone or Internet, schedule an appointment or refer the patient for admittance.
“Many existing telemedicine solutions have overlooked the need for context-aware scheduling or have addressed it only minimally,” said Mr. Jose. “This system will help medical professionals to use patients’ electronic health records to make better decisions and achieve better outcomes.”
The new system uses a unique-zone based overlay structure that ensures proximity in both storage and routing of data. The proximity-aware overlay structure and scheduling mechanism work together to minimize the costs of data movement and to improve the system’s overall efficiency.
Marking Saxon Infotech’s first foray into the commercial products marketplace, development of the system draws on the company’s experience on projects such as the Federal government’s Retiree Drug Subsidy and Early Retiree Reinsurance programs and its highly developed capabilities in Service Oriented Architecture (SOA). In particular, Saxon Infotech will be contributing its knowledge in improving the system’s scalability to a cloud-based platform capable of supporting mobility to larger numbers of users over larger geographic territories and assuring compliance with security requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH) in the U.S.
The research and academic partner, which under its agreement with Saxon Infotech cannot be disclosed, is a source of world-class IT engineering graduates, many of whom are well known in the U.S. technology sector.