In Quebec and Ontario, 70-80% of coronavirus deaths occurred in care centres for seniors.
A remote monitoring technology based on artificial intelligence developed by a professor at McGill University in Montreal could slow the spread of coronavirus within the walls of long-term care facilities for seniors.
Professor Samira A. Rahimi’s invention was selected as one of 11 winning projects in Roche Canada’s Challenge to Counter COVID-19. It will be tested next month with about 60 patients in Quebec and Ontario for a period of three to six months.
In both provinces, between 70 and 80 per cent of coronavirus deaths occurred in senior care centres, Rahimi said.
Ms. Rahimi’s “AiCoV19: AI-empowered Real-time COVID-19 Symptom Monitoring and Prediction among Senior Residents” program exploits artificial intelligence and the so-called “internet of medical objects.”
Wearable technologies, such as wristbands and other sensors, and computer networks are connected via the internet to generate real-time interaction between beneficiaries and health care workers.
The project therefore monitors, monitors and predicts asymptomatic symptoms and changes in older adults. The device alerts health care workers when symptoms of COVID-19 are detected and/or predicted, and remains alert for any signs of decompensation.
For example, if the data indicate a change or deterioration in vital signs, such as fever or shortness of breath, the intelligent system will inform those responsible.
“The collected data is automatically transmitted to the platform. Everything is done in real time, Rahimi said. In the platform, we analyze the data (…) with artificial intelligence and we can send an alarm to the healthcare staff to tell them that something is wrong.”
The usefulness of the device, however, is not limited to coronavirus control, as Rahimi believes the technology could be used to help keep seniors at home.
“It could also be used to monitor people’s health in their homes,” she said. That would be very useful in telemedicine. (…) With artificial intelligence, we can predict whether something might go wrong, for example the next day or the following week.”
“We wanted to find a way to identify very quickly the people who have COVID-19 in these institutions,” she said. With artificial intelligence, we can monitor vital signs in real time.”