Wearable Health Care System
(IST-2001-37778, EU funded project)
Starting date: 01/09/02; closing date: 28/02/05; total project cost: 3,859,060 Euros; total EC funding: 1,775,569 Euros.
WEALTHY has been the first ICT funded project coordinated by a textile company, the project was based on the idea to demonstrate the feasibility of the implementation of a truly wearable monitoring system. A system able to guarantee the continuously monitor of patient’s vital signs through a ground-breaking woven sensing interface to be worn without any discomfort for the user. In this project, smart materials in fiber and yarn form endowed with a wide range of electrophysical properties (conducting, piezoresistive, etc) have been integrated and used as basic elements. The simultaneous recording of vital signs allows parameters’ extrapolation and inter-signal elaboration. This contributes to evaluate the patient’s synoptic data table and to trigger alarm messages.
WEALTHY system has been implemented by integrating computing techniques, smart sensors, portable devices and telecommunications, together with local intelligence and a decision support system. The proposed system has been tested on cardiac patients during rehabilitation and on soldiers during trials where extreme stressful environment conditions have been simulated.
The WEALTHY project presents two main innovations: the new type of sensors manufactured in textile form to provide a smart and comfortable textile interface, and a new service based on the monitoring system.
- Smart" garment fabrics have been developed and tested: sensing is done through textile materials and preprocessing steps are done on the portable electronics device, thus increasing the mobility and safety of the user, and limiting the amount of data to be transferred
- Direct wireless communication over the public network: Real-time data transfer will be made possible from anywhere the patient is located, and not limited to home or hospital
- Intelligent decision support system: User-friendly interfaces that help the interpretation of physiological signals by medical staff and assist them taking the right decisions
Smartex was involved as subcontractor in the European Union funded project "WEALTHY" as research laboratory of Milior SpA, moreover the coordinator of the project is now the CEO of the company.
Wealthy won the Avantex prize in 2005