Center for SMART Health has launched their first project called the Smart Home Lab. Smart Home Lab is a fake resident environment where scientists and researchers can simulate patient’s responses to a home treatment environment. This way more and more patients will be able to heal in their homes and avoid lengthy hospital stays. The “home” will contain several health sensors used to measure patient’s vitals and in doing so create a tailored treatment best suited to improve the patient’s condition. The SMART Health “home” is located in UCLA’s engineering wing.

Center for SMART Health is a joint collaboration between the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and UCLA Henry Samuell School of Engineering and Applied Science. The SMART Health Center aims to bring health technology solutions to the user’s home.

What Is SMART Health?

SMART Health, which stands for Systematic, Measurable, Actionable, Resilient and Technology-driven Health, will be an amalgamation of years of research done by doctors, engineers, computer scientists, data analysts and biomedical experts. The research will be used to progress healthcare information systems that focus mainly on mobile healthcare. Currently there is not much innovation in mobile healthcare solutions. The center is looking to change that. It is dedicated to researching newer solutions and technology methods to better predict health risks, provide better treatment solutions and improve the overall quality of healthcare provided. Hence it is looking to capitalize on the growing trend of ‘precision medicine’ and ‘big data’.

SMART Health is closely linked with incubators to commercialize their research projects and working with non-profit organizations as well. The center’s research scope is quite broad and their future projects are going to focus on robotics and analytics. Hospitals and other healthcare facilities are slow to adopt robotics and artificial intelligence. SMART Health is looking to change that.

Dr Arash Naeim and Majid Sarrafzadeh are the center’s co-directors. Dr Naeim is an associate professor of medicine and the Geffen School’s chief medical officer for clinical research. Dr Sarrafzadeh is a professor of computer science and electrical engineering at UCLA Engineering. Both have years of experience and knowledge under their belts and are well respected members of their fields. Regarding the project Dr Sarrafzadeh said, “The fundamental and applied research performed in the SMART Health Center could have an unprecedented impact on care. The flexibility, adaptability and mobility of wearable and remote health systems enable effective monitoring and delivery of information to patients without requiring time-consuming and costly clinical visits. In addition, predictive analytics is revolutionizing decision making that can improve health care and quality of life.”

Future Of Mobile Healthcare And The Role Of Big Data

Mobile healthcare is still in its initial stages and a lot of innovation and research is still required at this stage. This collaboration is just a start of things to come. Such projects are good to strengthen bond and relation between the two schools and will open the door for more innovative and creative ventures between IT companies and healthcare facilities. The biggest hurdle the mobile healthcare industry faces is streamlining the process for integrating research data to improve the decision making involved in ‘precision medicine’. ‘Big data’ will play a major role in streamlining the decision making process. It will be used to collect large amounts of data quicker and will generate more accurate analytical models, on which major decisions will depend on.

In the next five years, more healthcare facilities will start to depend more and more on mobile healthcare as this will provide them a jumpstart from their competition. Once data storage and security methods are improved, more and more individuals will make their personal healthcare information to be available for future analysis and predictions. This in turn will improve the mobile healthcare solutions and more accurate ‘precision medicine’ techniques will be made available for researchers and consumers.