Scripps Institute wins USAID grant to fight Ebola with wearable devices

The Scripps Translational Science Institute in San Diego received a grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development to develop a remote-monitoring tool for Ebola patients.

The project, called STAMP2 — an abbreviation for the Sensor Technology and Analytics to Monitor, Predict and Protect Ebola Patients — uses technology from developer Sotera Wireless, wireless health sensor developer Rhythm Diagnostic Systems and predictive analytics technology company PhysIQ. Through a disposable Bluetooth-enabled sensor that sticks to the skin, the system collects data such as skin temperature, blood oxygenation and other vital signs and sends them to a predictive analytics database, allowing for earlier diagnosis of Ebola and potentially more effective intervention, according to a news release.

The USAID's Fighting Ebola Grand Challenge, designed to spur innovation in Ebola treatment, received 1,500 entries. Government officials and experts selected the most promising ideas, according to the news release.

"The new approach will provide unprecedented visibility into a patient's physiology that we believe will be invaluable in improving care in minimizing risk of exposure during an Ebola virus outbreak," said Steven Steinhubl, MD, director of digital medicine at Scripps Health. "This will open the door to being able to identify warning signs very early on, when potentially lifesaving care can be provided."

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