Handbook of Tropical Medicine - teaching medicine through gaming!

Nibbie
Posts: 4
Joined: 2012.03
Post: #1
Hi guys,

I'm a medical student in the UK soon specialising in tropical medicine, I am working with a seasoned medical app developer and cardiothoracic surgeon in the US on a handbook of tropical medicine: a reference app covering all the important clinical features of the 36 main tropical diseases. It's going to be free and for iPhone and iPad.

Here's a little demo of our progress so far:





One of the features we are hoping to include is a "virtual lab"; basically it will contain a series of mini-game like tutorials in which the user can carry out diagnostic tests. I won't go into too much detail about all the different tests now but to give you an example, the "tourniquet test" involves putting a blood pressure cuff around someone's arm, inflated it to between their systolic and diastolic blood pressures, leaving it a given amount of time then removing it - if there area certain number of little red dots called "petaechia" left behind afterwards then the test is positive, and this indicates a particular disease.

So I'm looking for someone who is confident they can produce little mini-games like this for our app! I can assure you it's all to a very good cause, the content will be expert reviewed and go onto iTunes absolutely free and should make a big stir! Being used all over the world to treat diseases in some of the poorest countries on earth!

Hope to hear from someone! Smile
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Moderator
Posts: 916
Joined: 2002.10
Post: #2
Interesting! I'm looking forward for more updates, or more mini-games you come up with!

Being able to diagnose things (especially using simple tests (with minimal equipment)) would make this actually really accessible to non-medical professional.

Or think about making this as something accessible for a tourist. I'm visiting somewhere, I become ill. I pick up your app. I take a picture maybe, and/or I input some stats (pulse, temperatures, what have you).

Keep us updated. =)
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Nibbie
Posts: 4
Joined: 2012.03
Post: #3
Hmm, at the moment the app is aimed at education medical students and doctor/nurses, but, the mini-games should be accessible to anyone that's for sure! I'm hoping they will be attractive, intuitive and fun, and it should be very different from anything seen on the app story at the moment.

In terms of the written content, with a bit of prior medical knowledge (or a thesaurus!) to hand it should make sense to anyone.

But we really need someone with game dev experience to help us do this! My colleague has put together the rest of the app and I'm writing all the content, providing all the medicine etc. (huge job, we're talking about 75,000 words)... but neither of us can do any game development.

So if anyone is interested or knows someone who might be interested, please get in touch!!
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Nibbie
Posts: 4
Joined: 2012.03
Post: #4
Here's an example of one of the mini game type tutorials:

This is for what's called a tourniquet test, for a disease called dengue. Basically the user must pump a blood pressure cuff on the patient's arm to between their systolic and diastolic BPs (the two numbers you get in a blood pressure reading), leave it for a certain amount of time, remove it and count the number of petaechia per square inch, if it is above 10 then it's positive.

[Image: 528761_10150767364284740_742844739_11587...1320_n.jpg]
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Nibbie
Posts: 4
Joined: 2012.03
Post: #5
It is possible that if game developers are not keen to do this pro bono, these tutorials could be installed as an in-app purchase module, with the developer taking the vast majority of the proceeds.

This really is an exciting opportunity, we are exhibiting the app in it's current form at a medico-teaching conference next week, these mini games could really take it to the next level!
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Moderator
Posts: 700
Joined: 2002.04
Post: #6
@Yixian: I received your message but haven't been able to respond 'til now due to being busy with projects - sorry!

Firstly, from what you've written/shown I'm assuming you don't already have somebody to create the art necessary for the mini-games and so you're looking not just for a programmer but for an artist also...?

Secondly, whilst I'm no fan of the tools, I think it might be better if you were to try to look for a Flash/AIR developer to develop the mini-games; I believe Flash/AIR are able to deploy to iOS, developing the mini-games in Flash/AIR would likely be faster than developing the mini-games in Objective-C/Cocoa Touch/etc., and from what you've written/shown I don't believe the mini-games would be badly affected by the sub-optimal performance of Flash/AIR apps; however, I don't know whether the output of Flash/AIR can be incorporated into apps developed in Objective-C/Cocoa Touch/etc., as - from the video - yours appears to be...

Mark Bishop
--
Student and freelance OS X & iOS developer
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