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President Kim First "Patient" for Students' Telemedical Invention

Jun 22, 2011   |   by Lauren Dowling   |   Dartmouth Now

On March 7, engineering sciences students Alex Knapp ’10, Jeff Spielberg ’10, and Adam Strom ’10 tested their culminating project, a full-featured blood pressure and atrial fibrillation detection system that is compatible with a telemedical health care setting. The team’s first “patient”? President Jim Yong Kim.

The system could provide a way to remotely monitor atrial fibrillation—the most common heart arrhythmia—on a daily basis. It would enable more timely and effective treatment for the often asymptomatic condition. “A device like this could provide great benefits to underserved communities, in which a large proportion of health care costs are due to a few very ill or poorly managed patients,” says Spielberg.

The concept for the detection system originated with Dan Carlin, MD, founder of WorldClinic, who submitted a proposal to Thayer School of Engineering’s Cook Engineering Design Center (CEDC). For Thayer’s Bachelor of Engineering (BE) program’s two-term capstone project, the CEDC matches students with industry-proposed projects. The final product of the students’ work is delivered to the industry partner at the end of the second term.

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