Researchers at Xerox Innovation Group (XIG) are collaborating with Manipal University Hospital to develop non-contact health sensing technology that can accurately obtain and track healthcare vitals such as heart rate, temperature and some respiratory functions.
It can also detect cardiac dysrhythmia (irregular heart beat) without any probes touching the patient. The innovation promises to change how medical professionals collect and use important health data.
The Xerox remote health sensing technology opens up new avenues in telemedicine. A non-contact system that is accurate can not only greatly improve the comfort of the patients but also has possible applications for remote healthcare at homes, clinics and in rural villages and locations that may be far from a specialist.
Xerox foresees great hopes for how this technology can change the work of a therapist and how medical doctors practice medicine in the future.
Lalit K Mestha, research fellow at Xerox Research Center Webster and project leader said, "While many are focusing on wearable technology for health sensing, we are going beyond this by conducting research in non-contact health sensing that has the potential to greatly improve the comfort and quality of healthcare."
Xerox has developed image and signal processing algorithms that convert patient video captured from off-the-shelf cameras into health indicators such as heart rate.
Various algorithms used in the process capture movement when necessary using automatic motion detection algorithms from video images, phase synchronized signal processing for continuous monitoring and signal reconstruction.
Current research results indicate the remote health sensing technology can meet medical industry standards and will be easy to use by doctors, therapists and even patients.
Some of the technology is currently being tested in the neonatal unit of Manipal University. One of the key benefits is the ability to automatically analyze and detect respiratory and other medical diagnosis in infants without requiring contact probes attached to their sensitive skin.
The goal is to make continuous monitoring contact free, increasing patient comfort without decreasing accuracy of the health parameters being detected.