Pitches_Health++ 2018
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Pitch NumberNeed TitleDescription of NeedTags
Reduce Rx drugs costs by 20% of insurance plans (Stanford) using the CVS national formulary without loss of overall efficacy by tapping into the “wisdom of crowds” -- Stanford physicians, Rx drug user websites, etc. - via interviews, web scraping, etc
Hack the CVS National Rx Drug Formulary
Reducing healthcare costs, prescriptions drugs, pharmacy benefit managers, PBMs, Stanford healthcare insurance coverage, web scraping, Airtable, relational databases
2Algorithm for Processing Medical Images
There are millions of people who are unable to access quality eye care. There is a need for a technology that can increase access to eye care by creating a cost effective eye imaging system.
eyes, digital health, healthcare, med tech, global health, vision
Simplified mobile based image segmentation and reconstruction for 3D printing of simulation models for neonatal and pediatric surgeries
There are places where antenatal diagnosis and termination in fetuses with congenital anomalies is rampant to those where no antenatal diagnosis is made and post-nataly, no attempt is made to treat the baby. Even teaching departments in many state medical colleges lack appropriate facilities and infrastructure and appropriate expertise in this highly sophisticated field of pediatric surgery. More than 50% of newborns probably don’t even reach the hospitals and it is impossible to accurately assess the incidence of the anomalies. What happens to these newborns is obvious. They are either managed by untrained, unskilled professionals with lifelong morbidity or they die a silent death due to lack of medical facilities within reach. More than 50% of the infant mortality is during the neonatal period, with congenital anomalies being a major contributory factor. It is obvious that we still have a long way to go for developing this subspecialty in our country.
Neonatal Surgery, Pediatric Surgery, Upskill, Simulation
Low Cost Portable Minimally Invasive Dialysis Machine
Nearly 1 Million Children on Dialysis worldwide
Only treatment for end stage renal disease besides transplant (Difficult and expensive)
Expected to double with the increase
Current cost $20000 - $100000 / Person/year (lasts several years)
More than half the patients never receive treatment because its not affordable
Invasive and needed 2-3 times a week
Burden on the caregiver
Device itself is large, expensive and requires a lot of consumables
ESKD, Dialysis, CRF
5A low cost, affordable cochlear implant
The WHO estimates there are 32 million children with disabling hearing loss. Just in India there are over a million children who need cochlear implant or hearing aid. A standard implant surgery costs anywhere between $10000 - $20000. Mostly in private settings with out of pocket payments. Some 5000 surgeries were conducted till 2011. The best results were found among children who received the cochlear implant at 0-3 years of age. They achieved 90 to 95 percent hearing and language improvement.80-90 percent of these children develop a hearing and speech equal to those of children with normal hearing.
Sensorineural hearing loss, Cochlear implant, profound hearing loss.
6Be an Organ Donor and Save Eight Lives
The World Health Organization Global Consultation on Organ Donation and Transplantation advocated governments to utilize national resources aiming to increase organ availability and further develop sustainable programs for transplantation. Although in 2014, there were 119 873 solid organ transplants worldwide, there still lies a significant shortage of organs and this number only represents less than 10% of worldwide needs. Not only does this prevalent organ shortage lead to patients’ deaths but decreases their quality of life immensely. In Ontario, Canada, there are over 1,500 people waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant. This is their only treatment option, and every 3 days someone will die because they did not get their transplant in time. Interestingly, innovative collaborations with social media was shown to transiently increase registered organ donors.

For every registered donor, there are 8 organs that can be donated: the liver, lungs, heart, kidneys, pancreas and small intestine. Your tissues can also improve the quality of life for many ill people; the tissues you can donate are your skin, corneas, bone tissue including tendons and cartilage, heart valves and blood vessels.

Simply put, there needs to be an increase in organ donors to save lives. How can we increase available organs to save the lives of people worldwide?
Organ Donation, transplantation, organ donor registration, global health
Increase transparency in cancer treatment outcome, and recommend personalized medicine to save as many lives as possible.
In 2012, I was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer, while study at Singularity University. At SU we were discussing all the latest innovation at cancer care, but I was dismayed that I could not access any of these treatments due to financial, regulatory, geolocation and country barriers. I went through the most traditional treatment, was lucky to survive but now dealing with major side effects from radiation and chemo. My experience compels me to speak up and to do what I can to remove the barriers that I and so many millions of cancer patients face in their journey to be cured. I would like to work with a team of people to use blockchain and AI to increase transparency in cancer treatment outcome, and recommend personalized medicine to save as many lives as possible.
cancer, blockchain, AI, transparency
Cost-efficient system to clarify infection experience with dengue virus (including specific type of dengue virus)
Dengue virus is a mosquito-borne virus and caused outbreaks in many areas (most of them are categorized as developing countries). The severe symptom called "severe dengue" is triggered by multiple infections with different types of the virus, and it's necessary to clarify the infection experience of each potential patient before getting severe dengue. However, due to the lack of medical facilities and access to existing testing tools, it's difficult to collect samples in a large scale. Thus, it's hard to predict how and when the potential outbreak occurs and sometimes infection immediately spreads.
Dengue virus, blood sampling, infection
9HIV prevention in Africa
I’d like to describe one of the most common issues in Africa, which is HIV, the patients effected by it and the way healthcare addresses these issues. HIV is a virus that attacks the immune system, which is our body’s natural defense against illness. AIDS is a set of symptoms caused by HIV. The immune system is too weak to fight off infection, and they therefore can develop certain defining symptoms and illness. This is the last stage of HIV, the point where the infection is very advanced, and, if left untreated will lead to death.
According to WHO statistics the prevalence among adults aged 15 to 49 is the highest in Africa, at 3-4 %. (http://www.who.int/gho/hiv/en/) Thanks to ART, mortality has been continuously declining. However, annual incidence has stayed constant at about 2.6 million per year since 2005, which means the prevention has not been as successful as originally hoped. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27470028)
Examples of transmission routes are Sexual intercourse, which may be prevented by usage of condoms. Mother to child transmission is also very common, because not all the mothers can afford C-sections and artificial milk to feed babies.
As well as the low mortality rate, I believe that the HIV incidence rate should also be decreased. This should be achieved through the widespread usage of the condom and screening test before it is too late.

When I was in Tanzania I met a gentleman who is HIV+ and lost his wife some years ago. He has problems with his legs, meaning he can’t walk himself. His rent is delayed and he will be evicted in a few weeks. The organization that is helping such people has only 1 sponsor. There were more than 60 children without parents and students who would like to attend university are not able to due to the financial problem. The leader of this organization said that she is just waiting for miracle.
In the health++, with the help from motivated and intelligent students, I hope we, together, may solve many problems. I also believe that we can provide the miracle that they are waiting for.
HIV, maternal and child health, Africa, Obstetrics and Gynecology
10Mental healthcare after natural disasters
After natural disasters, such as earthquake and tsunami, many survivors are left without proper mental healthcare and it leads to mental diseases such as PTSD, and at the worst case, suicide. The main reason for this treatment gap is the lack of human resources. Especially in developing countries, there are almost no local counsellors. Also, foreign rescue team can't compensate for that gap because the understanding of cultural background is necessary for counselling.
Mental health
11Inappropriate Spine and Neck alignment
A day I and my friend saw people cursing due to a sprain in their neck so we decided to come up with a solution.
It has been observed that people use digital devices around 14 hours a day. While using digital devices people face the devices in an inappropriate position considering it to be more comfortable, but the reality is truing your neck towards the digital devices develops the feeling of pain in the neck or backache. If not resolved fast it results in a change in alignment of bones in portions like spine and neck which is very harmful to an individual. I have an idea which can assist in reducing the pain and make the person realize when he is not in an appropriate position which can assist in a sustaining a comfortable life.
Know Your Heart – increasing perceived susceptibility and behavior change for those at risk of coronary heart disease.
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the US and the world. In the US alone, an estimated 1 out of every 6 dollars in healthcare is spent on cardiovascular disease, with an estimated cost of $320 billion annually. Coronary heart disease – plaque buildup in the coronary arteries – is the most common cardiovascular condition; it is responsible for over 1,000 deaths per day in the US. The main risk factors for coronary heart disease (high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and tobacco use) are largely driven by lifestyle and can be targeted in prevention. These lifestyle risk factors are widely known by the public, yet coronary heart disease has remained the greatest cause of death for decades. In health psychology, behavior change is often brought about as a reaction to symptoms in patients themselves or within their social circle. Coronary heart disease is often asymptomatic until one experiences a coronary event, at which point death or disability is often the result.

How do we affordably increase the perceived susceptibility of individuals who are at risk for coronary heart disease – on a public/community health scale? How do we cause behavior change prior to their first coronary event?
heart disease, community health, health promotion, behavioral science
Improving Reliability of Diagnostic Data in Under-Resourced Areas
One of the primary challenges for medical professionals across the world is obtaining consistent and reliable data from their patients over the course of treatment or therapy. Continual prognosis is a laborious process for doctors, and inconsistencies due to prolonged gaps between hospital visits results in misdiagnosis and thereby inaccurate treatment recommendations.

Doctors should be able to accurately track and map a patient’s progress without requiring frequent visits, which is very difficult for most people. Eventually, as the patient continues in treatment, health reports should create trends in the data and flag data points which are associated with prevalent diseases or conditions.

This can be especially important in developing nations, where destitute conditions make any access to professional medical assistance near impossible. Thus, cost-effective healthcare packages should be instituted to increase efficiency and reliability in recording, analyzing, storing, and distributing medical information in areas where malnutrition and illness are widespread.

For example, there are several detection kits for common strains of influenza and pathogenic diseases. However, for proper diagnoses, these procedures must be repeated. Therefore, although the tests are fairly rapid, the results become inaccurate if patients do not return frequently to the doctor, as was the case for more than half of those who had contracted the disease last year (faulty data led to improper treatment).
diagnosis, medical devices, blood testing, health reports
A Change of Heart: Changing the Landscape of Heart Failure Treatment and Care in consideration of safety, efficacy, and affordability
Heart Failure incurs significant economic burdens on individual patient & families, as well as the society at large. (Kilgore et al. Risk Management and Healthcare Policy, 2017)

Aside from limited treatment options, poor prognosis - reduced lifespan and healthspan, heart failure is known for its high cost. HF has been estimated to cost $83,980 over the patient's lifetime, 80% of which would be related to in-patient hospital stay. (Dunlay et al. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes, 2011.).

Thus, an effective treatment protocol that attenuates (or reverses!) HF progression and/or cost-effective in-patient care for Heart Failure are urgently required.
Cardiology, Heart Disease, Heart Failure, Cardiovascular, Cardiomyopathy, Atrial-Fibrillation, Multi-factorial, Health Economics, Healthcare Policy
Digitizing the anti-coagulation algorithm for patients pre and post surgery
Managing anti-coagulation medication patterns and understanding a plan of action post surgery for this patient population.
thromobosis, mobile health, surgery
16Long term behavioral change
Therapists, doctors, dietitians, health-apps, fitness trackers and clubs all try to help clients keeping fit and healthy. Long term health effects of this interventions are in general less rosy than the measured short-term effects. The industry is aware of the costs that come with an unhealthy lifestyle. A healthy lifestyle only contribute to a 3% reduction of diabetes and CHD worth at least $10.440 million of savings . Only health-driven persons are likely to keep going in the long term, but most lay persons are unable to sustain behavioral change. And only 12% of the American population is proficient health literate. Motivating a larger population to change behavior can have immediate effect on quality of life and healthcare economics. We need to find a cost-effective measurable way to help Americans (at risk) stay motivated for a healthy lifestyle in the long-term.
mobile health, prevention, chronic illness
coaching, behavioral change, therapy adherence and compliance
After a person is diagnosed with a chronic illness (due to a lifestyle related disease). The patient is given treatment options. Next the patient decides on a treatment plan. To be able to follow the treatment (medication/lifestyle change) the patient receives information, and ideally guidance and behavioral change support to increase therapy adherence. In practice rates of non-adherence to chronic illness treatment regimens have been reported to be as high as 50 to 80%. The treatment process, costs of 1-1 coaching/consultation ($200-250) and limited skills of care givers to coach patients results in an ineffective care process leading to re-submissions to the hospital. On top of this few care givers have received in-depth training in behavioral techniques and may feel under qualified to effectively intervene with patients.

We need a cheaper and more effective way to increase the adherence and compliance of patients with a chronic illness to reduce complications, readmission costs and improve QoL
(Middleton et.al Long-Term Adherence to Health Behavior Change. American journal of lifestyle medicine. 2013 2013).
mhealth, ehealth, diabetes, chronic illness, information
Cleft lip and palate children: gadget to improve speech till surgery is done and
bettering speech after surgery is done.
Cleft lip and cleft palate are openings or splits in the upper lip, the roof of the mouth (palate) or both. Cleft lip and cleft palate result when facial structures that are developing in an unborn baby don't close completely. Cleft lip and cleft palate can be corrected. In most babies, a series of surgeries can restore normal function.But after the surgery also the person has to do regular visits to speech therapists for further recovery which is really expensive and time consuming. The patient has to perform some regular exercises so that patient can adapt quickly. So a gadget can be designed to improve speech till surgery is done and
bettering speech after surgery is done.
Cleft lip and palette
19Kodokushi (“Lonely Death”, in Japanese)
The problem I want to tackle in healthcare is Kodokushi.
Kodokushi (“Lonely Death”, in Japanese) is that generally refers to the death of single people living alone in their homes from sudden diseases and from their inability to ask for help, although, there’s no clear definition.
As a medical student,
I specialize in rural medicine and I have visited many hospitals in rural area of Japan and I’ve seen many patients who cannot even come to see a doctor on their own because of their physical and mental difficulties.
And the reality is that SO MANY of them die alone at their house and stay unfound for days, months, and even years.

The graph from Cabinet Office of Japan shows the number of people who died alone at their house in the metropolitan area of Tokyo. The number reached to more than three thousand only in Tokyo metropolitan (3127 people, 2015).

One-third of households with elderly people will be those who live by themselves in Japan.
Obviously it’s increasing year by year and it will reach to 7 million people by 2025.
Based on my calculation, 69 thousand people were actually dead alone in 2016(68803人)

The data from USA TODAY shows 10% of households in the United States were single residence of people more than sixty five years old, which counts up to around 45 million peoples.(https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2012/10/10/more-people-living-alone/1625591/)
mobile health, rural medicine,
A patient-centric messaging solution for healthcare providers and home care-givers
A secure and efficient communication (messaging) platform, that allows for healthcare providers 24/7 communication, inclusive of non-clinical home care-givers (neighbors, family, etc). The platform is a digital version of doctor/nurse notes, and includes text as well as image/video media.
Homecare, Healthcare provider, clinical solution
A rapid way to identify pathogens in infected patients in order to reduce treatment time and cost
Today, 60% of the prescribed antibiotics are unnecessary. Patients in high risk health states are treated with very powerful, expensive antibiotics, without knowing which bacteria is causing the infection or which drugs it is resistant to. The time needed for a full-fledged molecular test is not available in most cases. There is a need for a faster way to identify both pathogen and resistance genes to decrease mortality and decrease treatment cost, as it will become much more efficient.
Antimicrobial resistance, Antibiotics, risk, cost, efficiency
How could we effectively distribute more doctors to rural area in a country which has an enough number of doctors but too many of them gather in a city.
In Thailand, insufficient number of doctors and nurses at public hospitals in rural areas has been one of the most fundamental healthcare problems for years. At these hospitals, since there are not enough number of doctors, people would have to wait for hours and this is not so healthy for people going to hospitals. To avoid this, rich people would just go to private hospital while poor people cannot afford to do so. I believe this problem is not only happening in Thailand, but also in many other countries in the world. Due to these reasons, I would like to tackle this problem in Stanford’s hackathon.

World Health Organization indicated that the ratio of doctors and nurses per 1000 people should be above 2.28 which is a needs-based sufficiency of health workers .
This ratio in Thailand is 3.05 which is significantly higher and it means that Thailand actually doesn’t lack health workers.
However, if we look more closely into each prefecture in Thailand. We can find a big gap between each prefecture. For example, Bangkok which is the capital of Thailand has 1 doctor per seven hundred people while Bungkal, which is a rural prefecture, has only 1 doctor for six thousands people.

Though it is not easy, I think there may be ways we can distribute more doctors to rural areas. Whether we can think of a new policy of medical education such as requiring doctors to do an internship for more years after the graduation or to create an online application to solve this problem, I need more ideas and skills from people from various backgrounds such as engineers designers entrepreneurs and especially people from medical industry. This is why I would like to participate in this hackathon and come up with the best solution for ths problem.
distribution of doctors, rural hospital, private hospital, public hospital, WHO, matching theory
Monitor biomedical trends visually across ALL of PubMed + bioRxiv
With hundreds of healthcare papers being published every week, it's very difficult to keep up with emerging biomedical trends and evolving patterns over time in the healthcare research community. Keeping a pulse on scientific contributions via publications and preprints in PubMed and bioRxiv is currently infeasible at scale. Therefore, we are working on addressing some of these challenges with godseye: https://github.com/Quiltomics/godseye
NLP, visualization
How can we Improve access to Emergency Medical Services for communities in Urban Slums.
“Saving Seconds means saving lives” a motto that forms the image of Modern Emergency Medical services. During the critical emergency period “the Golden Hour” EMS services provide lifesaving support to severe trauma patients.

Unfortunately, this service is not available to residents of Urban Slums. According to the U.N. Human Settlements report about a billion people live in Urban Slums. Slum dwellers have poor or no access to basic infrastructure such as roads, clean water, hospitals and are therefore more highly susceptible to trauma caused by Cardiovascular diseases, Fire burns and cut injures.

These poor conditions in slums are continuing to grow with rapid urbanization of developing countries which are unable cope with a new influx of urban residents.

Due to the informal nature of these urban slums coupled with poor infrastructure. These settlements are poorly planned with terrible access routes and there is very little reliable information on residents. Both are critical in assisting Emergency services.

Currently EMS vehicles are too big or poorly equipped to travel directly to the patient. The 2nd major problem is navigation, as there is no reliable mapping data it is difficult to find the patients location in a timely manner and the 3rd notion of affordability, EMS even if available are more expensive than other modes of transportation.

It is therefore the norm. for EMS services not to operate in these areas which means a large segment of society will continue to live without this critical medical service.


How do we create platform for Emergency services to transport patients suffering from severe trauma in urban slums to medical facilities and how do we empower EMS services to operate in a way that is reliable, fast, and accurate?
Mobile Health, Emergency Services, Urban Slums, Transport, Spatial Mapping, Indigenous Knowledge, Artificial Intelligence
Pathology slides are often critical to accurate diagnosis, but are usually processed slowly and locally.
Pathology slides are required to diagnose many conditions, particularly certain cancers. These are usually a bunch of cells smeared on a microscope slide. Generally, pathologists (licensed MD's) will view the slide on a microscope and make diagnoses based on visible cell characteristics. This requires a local pathologist, which can be expensive. Pathologists can be paid per hour, and if we can also increase their efficiency, we can get more slides evaluated per hour- and thus more slides evaluated per dollar.
Digital pathology
Assessing movement abnormalities for Parkinson’s
First time development of a diagnostic tool for Parkinson’s covering the most prevalent cardinal symptoms. The need we want is a robust domestic go-to market strategy as well as covering the need for further development.
Business-strategy, clinical Trials, Future Product Development, Parkinson’s, Non-stigmatizing, Wearable technology
27Gamification of Oculometrics
There is no vital sign for brain health. If you are reading this, you almost certainly have above-average access to healthcare and still you have limited ability to monitor your own neurological health. Many categories of brain pathology – encephalopathies, brain trauma, and neurodegenerative disease – are diagnosed following a precipitating event, burdening the healthcare system with additional cost. For many brain pathologies, earlier detection will allow for earlier treatment, preventing progression to more severe disease and hospitalization, and possibly even lowering the rate of adverse outcomes like falls and motor vehicle accidents in these populations. By meeting the need for low-cost, engaging monitoring technology for brain health, we can begin to address the larger challenges of cost and outcomes.
pediatrics, neurology, telemedicine, outcomes
28Reimagining the HSA
With the proliferation of high deductible health plans (HDHP) in both the employer and individual healthcare insurance markets, there is an increased need to improve the HSA experience.
High Deductible Health Plan, affordability, deductible, insurance, healthcare costs
Developing a location-based augmented-reality mobile app platform for use during charity walk events that facilitates interaction amongst participants in the form of stories related to the cause
Crowd-sourced donations and fundraising is an integral part in making healthcare more affordable. In recent years, the mass adoption of charity walks/runs have not only benefitted fundraising, but also raised community awareness. However, event organizers lament at the difficulty in maintaining cohesiveness due to the lack of connection between the cause (i.e. decrease child mortality rate in third world countries) and the event (exercise 5K with your friends). Technology provides platforms through which we can empathize with others different from us; by providing such a platform for Charity walk events that facilitates the exchange of stories (of the victims of the disease), we can increase participant engagement, empathy, and ultimately affordability for the cause.
mobile, website, platform, charity walk, community