Rural India lacks easy access to health practitioners and medical centers, depending instead on community health workers. In these areas, common ailments that are easy to manage with medicines, often lead to medical escalations and even fatalities due to lack of awareness and delayed diagnosis. The introduction of wearable health devices has made it easier to monitor health conditions and to connect doctors and patients in urban areas. However, existing initiatives have not succeeded in providing adequate health monitoring to rural and low-literate patients, as current methods are expensive, require consistent connectivity and expect literate users. Our design considerations address these concerns by providing low-cost medical devices connected to a low-cost health platform, along with personalized guidance based on patient physiological parameters in local languages, and alerts to medical practitioners in case of emergencies. This patient-centric integrated healthcare system is designed to manage the overall health of villagers with real-time health monitoring of patients, to offer guidance on preventive care, and to increase health awareness and self-monitoring at an affordable price. This personalized health monitoring system addresses the health-related needs in remote and rural areas by (1) empowering health workers in monitoring of basic health conditions for rural patients in order to prevent escalations, (2) personalized feedback regarding nutrition, exercise, diet, preventive Ayurveda care and yoga postures based on vital parameters and (3) reporting of patient data to the patient's health center with emergency alerts to doctor and patient. The system supports community health workers in the diagnostic procedure, management, and reporting of rural patients, and functions well even with only intermittent access to Internet.
Prof. Prema Nedungadi, Jayakumar, A., and Raghu Raman, “Personalized Health Monitoring System for Managing Well-Being in Rural Areas.”, J Med Syst, vol. 42, no. 1, p. 22, 2017.