UBC researchers win $100,000 grants to adapt cellphones to diagnose pneumonia

Two UBC researchers who are testing the use of mobile phones to diagnose pneumonia and helping treat AIDS patients in Africa have just won $100,000 grants to help them do just that.
Walter Karlen, a post-doctoral fellow in the university’s department of engineering, is developing a cellphone-based “camera oximeter” that rural doctors and nurses can use to test patients’ oxygen saturations levels — a key indicator of pneumonia.
UBC assistant clinical professor Richard Lester won for his work on WelTel, a program that contacts patients weekly via text message to remind them to follow their drug therapy and address any problems they may have. A preliminary study of 530 AIDS patients in Nairobi using the program found a marked improvement in their health: a 20 per cent reduction in their viral load.

The Province, Fri Feb 10 2012, By: Elaine O’Connor, Link to full text