App aims to save lives by diagnosing pneumonia earlier

In many parts of the world, there aren't enough doctors to take care of people leading to higher mortality rates. A team from Makerere University in Uganda was the only African team to win in the 2014-2015 Big Ideas Contest organized by the University of California Berkeley. The device that the team won with tied for second place in the contest and is an app and cell phone combo designed to aid in detecting pneumonia early.

Pneumonia is an illness of the lungs that can make it hard to breathe and can lead to death in people who have the condition if left untreated. The app works in conjunction with a cell phone and uses digitized audio recordings from a patient's chest to hear the lung crackles that go along with pneumonia.

A stethoscope connection for the cell phone and app allows for better recording of lung sounds. The sounds recorded via the stethoscope would be stored as digital files that could be sent to doctors for further analysis later.

The team that developed the app and cell phone combo was one of only two international universities to score a win in the competition with the other being a team from Australia that came up with an enhanced reading tablet for kids.

SOURCE: Forbes