MassDevice.com is liveblogging the World Health Medical Technology Conference at Boston University.
The World Health Medical Technology Conference is a one-day workshop dedicated to exploring the opportunities and challenges of designing, building and funding medical technologies for the developing world. It’s a way to bring together stakeholders from the medical technology industry with the leading minds in the Global Health movement. To find out more about the conference, visit the conference’s website for an agenda, registration information and a list of speakers.
As the first speaker, Dr. Burke set a tone for the WHMT conference by noting that "we’re here because all of us believe that tech and innovation can affect resource scarce environments." The Dircector of the Division of Global Health and Human Rights in the Massachusetts General Hospital’s Department of Emergency Medicine asked how – at the end of the day – will new technology be scaled? Burke said that in order to make an impact, healthcare providers and technologists need to think systemically: there needs to be a methodology for developing medical devices that can help the developing world.
Burke cited the maternal deathrate to illustrate the problems facing global health initiatives. Women are dying because of complications in birth and, according to Burke, presenting the largest health discrepancy in the world. The poorest sectors of our populations are dying. The technology exists to make Doctors’ jobs easier, but it’s just not feasible to implement its broad, outside-the-laboratory, use.