NewswireToday - /newswire/ -
San Diego, CA, United States, 2013/08/15 - Tuberculosis (TB) is the second leading cause of infectious-disease deaths and has killed more people globally than all other pandemics combined. In the U.S., California, New York, Texas and Florida now account for more than half of TB cases nationally. NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ
The disease is curable if treated properly. Patients are typically required to follow a strict antibiotic regimen, which generally entails taking a combination of daily pills for six months. In some cases, government health departments are involved and require healthcare workers to visit patients daily and observe them taking their medication. The procedure is costly and intrusive to patients, which is why some of them stop following their treatment plan.
To address this problem, the Verizon Foundation teamed with University of California at San Diego (UC San Diego), to demonstrate a new therapy system that uses mobile and cloud technology to help ensure TB patients follow their critical treatment.
By providing funding, smartphones and leveraging Verizon’s healthcare enabled cloud solution, Verizon Foundation is enabling researchers at UC San Diego, Qualcomm Institute and Calit2, to deliver an innovative mHealth treatment program called Video Directly Observed Therapy (VDOT).
VDOT enables TB patients to record their daily treatments on video-enabled smartphones, upload and store their videos securely on Verizon’s healthcare enabled cloud, and send the videos to their health department, where health officials can remotely monitor treatment compliance e. This solution avoids the stigma TB treatments can have on patients and can curtail poor medication adherence, which has led to the emergence of drug-resistant strains of the bacterium.
“Our collaboration with UC San Diego demonstrates the power of public and private partnerships to scale innovation to improve health outcomes for those who need it most,” said Anthony Llompart, director healthcare, Verizon Foundation. “The VDOT program leverages technology to enable improved access and quality of healthcare, making UC San Diego an ideal partner for Verizon’s Innovative Healthcare Initiative.”
The UC San Diego and the Verizon Foundation will demonstrate the VDOT therapy solution on Thursday, August, 15, 2013 at the university's main campus. The demo will also stream live at 2 pm. ET.