Telefónica I d develops a “virtual bed” for the hospitalization of the patient at home

28 02 2011

Telefónica I d has developed, through an r & d project, in collaboration with the Hospital Costa del Sol in Marbella (Malaga) and funded by the Agency for innovation and development in Andalusia (IDEA) and Technological Corporation of Andalusia (CTA), a service of “virtual bed” or home health teleattention, that will enable the hospitalization of the patient in their own home Thanks to the communications and information technology networks. The system allows a telematic monitoring of the condition of the patient, as well as establishing medical and social nature of remote queries, both programmatically as urgent.

The ‘ bed Virtu@l’ It has been developed, initially, for the care of patients in terminal situation, palliative care is needed, and also for those suffering from chronic diseases, as chronic heart failure. It is an open system that allows you to include any other pathology by adding the appropriate biomedical devices and the appropriate medical protocols.

The project, where quality and outcomes research group has collaborated on health services of the Hospital Costa del Sol in Marbella (Malaga), part of the program Living Lab health Andalusia, supported by the ministries of health and economy, Innovation and science and to provide technological solutions to specific social problems.

The system is characterized by its simplicity, Since the touch device in the patient's home is very easy to use and just wirelessly or need for ADSL. Además, has clinical guidelines, It suggests a protocol based on the evolution of the pathology of the patient. Además, through a 3 G InIn additionconnection, It allows contact with the health care professional, an agent trained in nursing that noted the request for appointment or performs the corresponding derivation. Healthcare professional can also be put in contact with the patient via video call or audio communication.

According to the estimates of Telefónica I d, If it were ten percent of chronically ill with this service, savings could be achieved in the 9,5 percent of health spending or assume an increase of chronically ill of the 9,5 percent containing spending. [en línea] Seville (Spain):, 28 de febrero de 2011, [REF. 23 de febrero de 2011] Available on Internet:

Pandemics in the era of Twitter: “Infodemiology” and “Infoveillance” as new methods for research in translation of knowledge and syndromic surveillance

24 02 2011

Pandemics in the Age of Twitter: Infodemiology and infoveillance as new methods for knowledge translation research and syndromic surveillance.

Do as of effectively with population health officials were reported during the H1N1 pandemic?? How reacted the population to public health and the health care system?? What role should social media play in the overall strategy of communication of public health agencies??Can Twitter be used to detect epidemics before time??

These questions can be answered by “Infodemiologists“. “Infodemiology” It is an emerging field of research at the crossroads between the population user of health services, Informatics and public health system. It can be defined as the science of distribution and determinants of information in an electronic environment, specifically in Internet, with the ultimate goal of reporting to the public health.


The Dr. Gunther Eysenbach, a pioneer in this area of research, It is analyzing longitudinal data collected by his group during the outbreak of H1N1 of Twitter. His group has developed a system of infovigilancia (PoC) called Infovigil, You can identify, Archive and analyze information, health-related, Internet information flows, Twitter and other social media. Infoveillance has the potential to, not only to detect outbreaks and other early public health highlights, but that you can also help us to understand the situation of the population during a pubic health emergency. Ultimately informs us of how public health agencies and those responsible politicians should use social media to future threats to public health in a context of dissemination of information and knowledge translation strategies. [en línea] Toronto (Ontario, Canada): eehealthinnovation.orgPandemics in the Age of Twitter: Infodemiology and infoveillance as new methods for knowledge translation research and syndromic surveillance [REF. 24 de febrero de 2011] Available on internet (PDF document): Centre of Global eHelth Innovation Annual Report 2009/10

Strengthen the link between research and business, key not to lose the train of innovation

21 02 2011

Spain is theninth country in the world in scientific production (measured in international scientific publications), butfails to move those results the applied economics research.

"The problem is that we have one"ability to generate and utilize technology that is six times less "than the European average", complains to Juan Mulet, Director-general ofCotec, the business foundation for technological innovation. Mulet recognizes, similar to the Ministry of science, that this transfer from laboratories to firms jammed due to thelack of private investment in r & d, the shortage of jobs in sectors of medium and high technology and the low number of innovative companies. Also fails a proper technical training by thedelay in vocational training. In addition, Mulet explains that since 2004 the corporate r & d "has been growing at a rate of the" 15% annual, but the crisis has completely broken the good path, "he was running".

Below the European average

As a result, Spain is situatedbelow the EU average in innovation: in thepost 19 (about 28 countries surveyed) of the last European innovation marker presented this month by the European Commission, in the same group as Croatia, Italy, Czech Republic, Portugal, Hungary, Poland, Malta or Slovakia.

"We have to run to reach the EU average". The 27 Member States are already considering jumping in the 1,19% of GDP (of private r & d investment) to the 3%, andWe cannot just hook”, warns the general Secretary of innovation, Juan-Tomas Hernani.

Source:Statistics on activities in r & d year 2009. Final results (National Institute of statistics)

And so you don't miss the train, the Ministry of science and innovation has marked somevery ambitious targets that should be in 2015: 6.000 additional million euros in private investment, 40.000 more companies applying innovation and half a million new jobs in media and high-tech sectors.

This means trying tomultiply the number of companies almost by five innovative and bend the corporate funds destined for r & d, Since, According to data of 2009, some 13.600 enterprises perform r & d on Spain and invest 7.500 million euros annually in innovation.

Main weaknesses

The Spanish economy has lived "historically" ofsectors "with little added value", such as tourism or construction”, said Mulet. Now, After the crisis, "is is noting that these companies turn to innovation as the solution". They have lived without it, but now they need it. To begin with there is thatchange your mindset and inject them very skilled labour”, Adds the director-general of Cotec.

But thatLabor is scarce. Not at the college level (graduates and engineers), but in the technical and technological, from vocational training. In addition, at the moment, There is not enough business structures to assimilate more formed people, "the"Labor remuneration system is very unattractive"and the training within companies is" scarce"", with what employees are stuck, "without specialize and improve their knowledge", lists to Mulet.

According to the head of Cotec, "also"the link between research and business failure”. If you have to transfer the results of the research and technology companies, you them must first explain progress so that they understand the advantages and their uses, and then, you have to teach them to use them. "This requires teams of people and this so there are no", says.

Help projects that go from the laboratory to the company

To put an end to these weaknesses and try to achieve the objectives, the Ministry has changed from 2010 State policy: first, replacing the traditional unidirectional policy, in which the Government is the only one in driving innovation, a strategy (State innovation strategy, strategy) Whatinvolves society as a whole and facing the question in a multidisciplinary way, from financing, training and environmental sustainability.

There is inscribed the Innovation Plan 2010, with which, According to the general Secretary of innovation, "replaced the old tools that gave money to generate the transfer of innovation by another more powerful", with whichfunded research projects related to companies”, that is to say, include all the links in the chain from the laboratory to the company. Like this, is intended to continue subsidizing the research, focusing on long-term public-private partnership projects, and adds a technical support to companies that become involved in these projects.

The change in strategy was well received, "there was" 177 "shares of universities already linked to companies", ensures Hernani. Like this, in a "very difficult" year, warns, There was aincrease of the 54% in the resources distributed by the Secretariat of innovation to reach "3,150 million euros in calls", "agreements and contracts". "Now", in 2011, We are going to sectorizar. We want to help you understand themarkets to which we want to focus: health (pharmaceutical, Health machinery, precision medical instruments, etc.), of renewable energies (wind marine, photovoltaic, solar thermal, etc.) &quetc.r intelligent networks", detailed responsible for innovation.

A world in constant mutation

AND, inside the enormous mobility and change that characterizes science and innovation, Hernani stresses that you should take into account thetalent acquisition, It is one factor for mobility people around the world. "So", While we are talking about that Germany offers thousands of jobs to Spanish engineers, "a group of businessmen explained me as the other day that they will have to import FP technical for very specialized services", says. O, for example, compare Spanish costs by outsourcing the technological sector of the Indian State of Bangalore, "it proves that Mount software factories in Salamanca and Caceres"is competitive”.

Why, warns Hernani, also needsimprove the capacity of reaction to what happens in the world. “Necesitamos una estructura lo más flexible posible de los sectores científicos y tecnológicos, Whattolere que haya gente de aquí que se vaya and, luego, vuelva; que haya sectores en los que venga gente y otros, en los que se vaya”, concludes. [en línea] Madrid (Spain): rtRTVE.es21 de febrero de 2011, [REF. 18 de febrero de 2011] Available on internet:

Ultrasound on your mobile phone

17 02 2011

The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) United States has approveda “smartphone” allowing users performing ultrasounds without moving from home. This innovative device consists of a Mobile brand Toshiba, with Windows Mobile, connected toan ultrasound probe It enables capturing images to see, among other things, the face of a baby.

MobiUS ultrasound imaging will allowsee the fetus through the mobile screen, but also you can make analysis and measurement of the future baby, In addition to projecting a peripheral vascular imaging of the same also, the phone can besend images via WiFi to the doctor so that you can establish a diagnosis and follow-up of pregnancy.

Mark Mobisante, the MobiUS system developer, has announced that for the moment you will have a cost of between 7.000 and 8.000 $ (of 5.141 a 5.876 EUR), but they expect to reduce it to half time. [en línea] Madrid (Spain): MuMuyInteresante.es11 de febrero de 2011, [REF. 17 de febrero de 2011] Available on internet:

Only the 5% Spanish hospitals used social networks

14 02 2011

Only 44 Spanish hospitals used any social network, which is just the 5,5% of the total. Thus it is clear from a study conducted by the Permanent Observatory of ICT in health (, an initiative promoted by the Group ITACA-TSB of the Universidad Politécnica de Valencia.

“Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. Spain social networks have experienced an impressive growth, and all kinds of companies and institutions want to be present and be partakers of this phenomenon. However, "health organizations suffer a noticeable delay in this aspect", Ignacio Basagoiti points, researcher of the ITACA-TSB.

The Permanent Observatory of ICT in health ( of the ITACA-TSB of the Politécnica de Valencia He was born a year ago with the objective of analyzing the use of new technologies in health.

In the case of social networks, for Basagoiti, "Although we are at a level similar to that of most advanced countries - in fact", Spain presents only one percentage point below countries such as United States- the use of tools like Facebook, Twitter, etc. by hospitals is very low. You can say that hospitals are missed the possibility of talking with patients. And this is not just marketing, but a way to get valuable information, "useful to introduce quality strategies and improve the assistance".

The Permanent Observatory of the use of ICT in health has a year analyzing these data. "It is shortly to assess trends and conclusions", but we already have a x-ray of the use of the web 2.0 by Spanish hospitals. This is much more than it had a year ago, When considered us the need to create ObservaTICS "to know what was happening in an area of such rapid changes", point Vicente Traver, Director of ITACA-TSB.In his opinion, "provide these data to the rest of the scientific community will allow to investigate yet unknown aspects of these phenomena and", beyond, "it will help to draw conclusions and make decisions that will improve people's lives easier".

This map reflects the percentage of hospitals with own web at Spain. Higher higher color intensity number of centres with its own web.

About ObservaTICS

The "Permanent Observatory on ICTs in health" (ObservaTICS) analyzes, on an ongoing basis, the development and influence of ICT in all areas of human health. It's a platform open to researchers, organizations and institutions interested in the topic.

ObservaTICS began its work in the year 2010, addressing the issue of the use of the Internet and collaborative tools by Spanish health centres.

Through its web portal provides information on the use of social networks each hospital, What is the evolution of such use, the geolocation of each hospital, health resources available, as well as the distribution by provinces and autonomous communities.

In the same way, There is a blog that aims to generate topics for discussion on the situation of the "2.0 hospitals" in Spain, to raise awareness and give value to the efforts of the pioneers centres, show the possibilities of these tools and provide examples of their use, (e) invite all stakeholders to participate in ObservaTICS and integrated it into its work methodology.


ITACA-TSB It is a group of excellence dedicated to the development and transfer of applications of new technologies for the improvement of the quality of life: e-health and telemedicine, e-inclusion, ambient intelligence (AMI), information for health and collaborative health.

ITACA-TSB It aims to implement health promotion initiatives, specifically on issues such as physical activity and healthy eating habits, creating scenarios where integration techniques of vital signs telemonitorizacion, knowledge management, application of motivational strategies, and a long etcetera.

TSB belongs to the Institute ITACA of the Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, and is currently working on projects such as HeartCycle, Managed Outcomes, METABO, OASIS, Salupedia, etc.. [en línea] Valencia (Spain): NoNoticiasMedicas.es14 de febrero de 2011, [REF. 14 de febrero de 2011] Available on internet:


HICT 2011 International Forum on Health Care and Information Communication Technology

10 02 2011

Of the 8 to the 10 March of 2011 the first edition will be held in Barcelona from the International Forum on Health Care and Information and Communication Technology (HICT 2011).

The International Forum on health care and the information communication technology It aims to share knowledge and experiences of research to explore how ICTs can be used in the field of health to evaluate, prevent and manage health issues.

The Forum will be in English with translation simultaneously into Spanish. Registration for professionals, researchers and students can be performed through the the HICT web page.



This is the Welcome message the promoters of the project:

The integration of the use of the technologies of information and communication (ICT) in the field of health can be useful to improve health care. This is the reason why this international forum has been raised.

Is aimed at the International Forum on health care and the information communication technology share knowledge and experiences of research to explore how ICTs can be used in the field of health to evaluate, prevent and manage health issues. Researchers, students and professionals can attend and participate actively in the Forum.

In particular, the first Forum will focus on offering a vision General the wide range of uses of ICT in the field of health. Future bi-annual forums will address more specific issues.

We hope that these forums are very attractive and interactive since the intention is to build a community where people can share experiences and learn from others.

This forum is organized by three research groups with a special interest in the use of ICT in the health.

We hope to see you at the first international forum: DISCOVERING the wide range of uses of ICT in health in Barcelona, and they help us build this community!


The integration of the use of information and communication technology (ICT) in the field of health can be helpful for improving health care. For this reason, this International Forum has been planned.

The International Forum on Health Care and Information Communication Technology is aiming at sharing knowledge and research experiences to explore how ICT can be used in the field of health to evaluate, prevent, and manage health issues. Researchers, students and professionals are anticipated to attend and actively participate in this meeting.

Specifically, the first forum will be focused on offering a general overview on the broad range of uses of ICT in the field of health. Future biannual forums will approach more specific topics.

We expect these forums to be very engaging and interactive since we intend to build a community where individuals can share experiences and learn from others.

This forum is organized by three research groups with a special interest in the use of ICT in health (see organizing committee).
We hope to see you in the First International Forum: DISCOVERING THE WIDE RANGE OF USES OF ICT IN HEALTH in Barcelona, and that you help us to build this community!

HICT2011 [en línea] Barcelona (Spain): HIHICT2011REF. 09 de febrero de 2011] Available on Internet:

Dr Pike: The "industrialization of medicine"

7 02 2011

Dr. Josep Manel Picas Vidal

Director de Sistemes i les TIC l’Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau

Health practice, is subjected for many years, to a discussion that has more or less radicalized supporters, in its two possible approaches, It is a science or an art?? Sure we would find arguments in favour of both concepts, on the one hand, the necessity of applying scientific knowledge, one that is based on the cause-effect relationship, in evidence of results or comparative analysis with statistical robustness; However we can use arguments underpinning the second approach, the necessary creativity, the intuition to consider with different weightings, a set of variables which ultimately lead us to make a decision or successful therapeutic diagnostic performance.

Probably, This topic, It lies at the base of the little progress that we could call the industrialization of health practice in general and in particular of the medicine, understood as the standardization of processes that seek to obtain a result encompassed in a product called health; at this level it is necessary the use of technologies of the information and communication; However, If we compare it with other sectors the advance is exasperadamente slow, If take into account tools, with all its potential and actual costs are already here.

It is difficult to conclude the reasons, We could point to some: the great intervention of persons in the process (more than the 75 % global health costs, in hospitals and primary health care are devoted to give back to human resources, most of them highly qualified), the large number and complexity of processes involved in a particular health problem,and the consideration that ICT spending is an investment postponable (much more in times of restrictions on spending)

However, some favor wind begins to blow, the need to make less bureaucratic, of re-ingenierar and optimize processes (early introduction of methods such as LEAN production systems or Six Sigma) and perhaps the most powerful: the need to "do no harm" that would continue to the concept of quality and patient safety. Both seem to be that they are taking initial steps, It will demand deep change management policies, If you do not want to get delayed or anchored by inertia and sometimes the resistance generated by the intervention of a large number of people, with a high variability of roles and knowledge.

At last, comment that it is absolutely necessary to promote and promote new initiatives, that put us on the right path and at the same time serve as a bed to generate the necessary cultural change, for the emergence of new and more advanced proposals.

Healthcare technology

3 02 2011

Our national health system is recognized as one of the best in the world although it is subjected to various threats, notably the ageing of the population, given its effect on the number of people suffering from chronic diseases (the 5% patients consume the 70% of health resources) and its impact in terms of cost (health spending per capita of elders of 65 years is at least four times higher than children of this age).

For this reason, According to EUROSTAT estimates, the public budget Spain dedicated to health must grow from the 5,5% of GDP in 2007 up the 7,1% in 2060, When elders of 65 years have passed from 8 a 17 millions of people and elders of 80 years will be around 8 million compared to the 2 current. All this will happen in a situation in which the number of pensioners relative to the number of occupationally active contributors will grow significantly.

On the other hand, the technological progress and the idea of that health is priceless, Although a high cost, Health Services strongly without having previously demonstrated improvements in the effectiveness/cost ratio that will involve the introduction of new technologies. This fashion effect explained, among other reasons, by the preponderance of the distribution companies (It is estimated that only the 20% health products used in Spain are manufactured in our country) and its role in the continuous training of health professionals.

This situation there are two opposite ways. One is to develop technologies that maximize the cost/effectiveness ratio giving rise to families of generic health products by involving practitioners and health centres to establish their technical requirements and criteria of prescription, and the Spanish industry in its production, whether manufacturers of this sector or other sectors in crisis who wish to convert taking advantage of their technological capabilities and management.

He has indicated that, from a strictly economic perspective, on equal terms, purchases of products manufactured in Spain are less burdensome for the public finances than imports, given that generate a tax return that falls on the factors of production that does not occur in these (between a 30 and a 35 by 100 acquisition costs returns to the State via income tax, VAT, social security contributions, corporate tax, etc., not to mention saving that prevent unemployment benefits).

Another way is to take advantage of the crisis in which we are installed to reduce the budgets of public health and the quality of the services provided, What, without a doubt, It will limit the demand for those citizens who can afford private medical insurance, elaborating on the savings. I'm afraid that companies in this sector already are rubbing his hands. [en línea] Valencia (Spain): foForum-icv.org24 in January of 2011 [REF. 03 de febrero de 2011] Available on Internet: