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2023 People's Choice Awards

Anemia Assessment in Resource-Poor Regions

Saint Louis University

Members: Amogh Chariyamane, Jake Little, Kevin Noonan, Andrew Kotz

Faculty Advisors: Dr. Tim Randolph and Dr. Sridhar Condoor

Problem Statement:

Anemia is a significant health condition in underdeveloped countries. Characterized by red blood cell insufficiency, anemia affects over a billion individuals and contributes to maternal mortality. Although several tests exist to measure hemoglobin and thereby diagnose anemia, these tests are expensive and inaccessible in regions lacking resources.


University of Los Andes

Members: Andrea P. Gomez & Andres Tarquino

Faculty Advisor: Prof. David Bigio

Problem Statment: A third of children in Colombia are born with congenital cardiac disease. In low-income regions, the infant mortality rate is three times higher due to the lack of access to basic medical technology. Consequently, thousands of newborns suffer from congenital heart diseases that could have been adequately treated with proper and early diagnosis.

Brighter Breaths

Case Western Reserve University 

Members: Sahil Patel, Kai Abitbol-Pierce, Max Rollins, Danil Mosley, Isabella Lugo, Trang Ngugen

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Andrew Rollins

Problem statement: The current lack of a sustainable and appropriate pulse oximeter for pediatric use in low resource settings is leading to delayed diagnosis and treatment of respiratory diseases, resulting in disproportionately high child mortality.

Celestial Trio

Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology

Members: Tonmoy Chandro Saha, Shawkat Osman Shishir, Maksudul Hoque Rafi

Faculty Advisor: Nusrat Binta Nizam

Problem Statement: In underdeveloped countries, only well-equipped hospitals can afford automatic external defibrillators due to the high cost ($1300-$3000). This results in a few AEDs with respect to population density. This device should be widely available all over the country to save more lives. A cost-effective portable AED can solve this problem. Our financial model shows an AED.


University of Rochester

Members: Judy Monickaraj, Duy Doan

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Richard Waugh

Problem Statement: Our goal is to create a proof-of-concept for a lateral flow assay antigen test that degrades in a non-toxic manner in the soil or ground sewage water lines while still maintaining low cost per unit levels and high sensitivity levels. This test can be adapted to at-home rapid antigen tests in the future, such as for COVID detection.

Clemson Medical Devices for Low Income Countries

Clemson University

Members: Kaitlyn Cimney, Joshua Londhe, Kendall Winston

Faculty Advisors: Dr. Delphine Dean, Dr. John DesJardins, Dr. Melinda Harman

Problem Statement: Of the 40 million amputees in developing countries, only 5 to 15 percent are able to receive prosthetics. Our goal is to create an affordable ankle prosthetic that allows for dynamic motion of the ankle joint and is durable enough to withstand the environment of Indian farming communities. 

Fistula Fighters

Washington University in St. Louis

Members: Savannah Chatman, Samantha Olson, Trinh Woolridge

Faculty Advisors: Dr. Christine O'Brien, Dr. Lewis Wall, Dr. Tracy Spitznagle

Problem Statement: The aim of this project is to find a way for women living with obstetric vesicovaginal fistulas (VVF), abnormal openings between the bladder and vagina that result from prolonged and obstructed labor, to reenter society without experiencing extreme humiliation, isolation, and stigma due to uncontrollable leakage of urine through the genital tract. 


 University of Lagos, Federal Technical University 

Members: Motunrayo Sanyaolu, Mujidat Olaoseegba, Erinle Temiloluwa 

Faculty Advisors: Prof. Muhammed Amuda and Engr. Williams Baah 

Problem Statement: Infant mortality is a huge problem in the world. Preterm birth contributes to 10% of babies born and 18% of infant deaths annually. It leads to hypothermia which increases the mortality risk by 80% for every 1°C decrease. We aim to solve hypothermia by making a low-cost infant warmer.

Lil Pap

Georgia Institute of Technology 

Members: Dhruv Miglani, Maia Baumbach, Caroline Connelly, Leighton Chen

Faculty Advisors: Dr. Kelsey Kubelick, Dr. James Stubbs

Problem Statement: In low-resource countries, 1 in 8 babies are born preterm. These preterm neonates are often born with underdeveloped lungs which lead to problems like Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS). There is a lack of access to sustainable CPAP devices to support early respiratory development and reduce avoidable infant mortality.

Lungs Up!

Stanford University 

Members: Amanda Cantwell, Leslie Espinoza Campomanes, Brian Kuglen, Smiti Mittal, Sylvie Wilson

Faculty Advisors: Prof. Ross Venook, Dr. Jan Liphardt, Ms. Bianca Yu

Problem Statement: Pneumonia claims the lives of ~700,000 children under five years old annually. It disproportionately affects lower-income countries, where lack of healthcare access delays pneumonia detection, increasing both the incidence of severe pneumonia and mortality. Early detection would improve treatment efficacy and prevent pneumonia epidemic outbreaks.

pH Perfect

Rice University

Members: Sofi Aguilera, Travis Dowd, Shannon McGill, Kevin Yin

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Meaghan Bond, Dr. Jennifer Werdenberg, Mr. Prince Mtenthaonga, Dr. Alyssa Shapiro, Mr. Yajur Maker, Mr. Joseph Bailey

Problem Statement: Nasogastric (NG) tubes often migrate outside of the stomachs of the preterm infants they feed. Fatal complications result if the infant is fed through a misplaced tube. Thus, NG tube placement must be verified before each feed. Our reusable, intuitive, and accurate device verifies NG tube placement to meet this need in low-resource settings.

Project Alivio

University of Michigan (M-HEAL)

Members: Saanjh Khattar, Mary Kritikos, Vidya Silai

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Cameron Louttit

Problem Statement: Pressure ulcers are injuries to the skin and underlying tissue that forms due to prolonged pressure and are most common in bedridden patients. There is a high incidence in hospitals like San Juan de Dios in Guatemala due to understaffing, the high physical demand of turning, and pen-and-paper tracking methods; current solutions are too expensive.

Pulse Oxi-Mates 

Georgia Institute of Technology

Members: Allie Barone, Giuliane Fuzetto Paschoal, Hirschel Nambiar, Marshall Nambiar

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Kelsey Kubelick, Dr. James Stubbs

Problem Statement: There is a dire need for a new method of non-invasively measuring a patient’s oxygen saturation quickly and reliably with far more accuracy than the current widely available technologies, regardless of a patient’s skin tone, as current pulse oximeters have been proven to read oxygen saturation inaccurately in people of color.

Save the Children 

Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology 

Members: Samiha Jainab, Md. Shaown, and Natalia Raj

Faculty Advisor: Shoyad Ibn Sabur Khan Nuhash 

Problem Statement: High neonatal mortality rates in low-income countries due to lack of healthcare access require a low-cost neonatal apnea monitoring and primary care system which will improve infant mortality rates, increase access, and reduce healthcare expenses using accelerometer and thermistor data for apnea detection and foot sole vibration as primary care.


University of Pennsylvania

Members: Shivani Guha, Anusha Keshireddy, Neha Krishnaswamy, Jennifer Luo, Shreya Viswanathan

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Erin Berlew, Dr. David Meaney, Prof. Sevile Mannickarottu

Problem Statement: Cesarean delivery accounts for over 29 million births worldwide, with 3-15% of these procedures resulting in surgical site infections (SSIs). Left untreated, SSIs have multiple complications often leading to hospitalization, and in severe cases sepsis, the third highest cause of maternal mortality worldwide. Early detection is crucial. 


University of Pennsylvania

Members: Moses Zeidan, Tom Statchen, Gloria Lee, Dale Kim, Dylan Hurok

Faculty Advisors: Mr. Sevile Mannickarottu, Dr. Erin Berlew, Ms. Julia Dunn

Problem Statement: Stabel is a novel, low-cost patient wearable device that seeks to improve and streamline in-ambulance IV insertions with IR-mediated vein identification and IV needle stabilization.

Team Alpha's Insubox 

Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology

Members: Daniel Waruingi, Clara Mugambi, Gregory Kiamba

Faculty Advisor: Mr. Benard Moki

Problem Statement: Many remote health facilities and diabetic patients in developing countries cannot store insulin within the advocated temperatures due to a lack of electricity and refrigeration predisposing them to life-threatening complications. We have developed a low-cost automated dual (solar and electricity) insulin storage system to address this problem. 

Team BabyBelt

Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology 

Members: Tasmia Rahman Aanika, Asfina Hassan Juicy, Mahmud Wasif Nafee

Faculty Advisors: Shams Nafisa Ali ( Project Supervisor ) , Dr Taufiq Hasan ( Project Advisor ) , Kaimul Hasan ( Project Advisor ) , Dr. Nasrin Sultana ( Medical Consultant ) , Dr. Mst. Afroza Khanam ( Medical Consultant ) 

Problem Statement: Uterine Contraction (UC) and fetal heart rate ( FHR ) are monitored as a standard assessment of fetal well-being. Making this monitoring available on a regular basis during pregnancy and labor remains a challenge for developing countries due to high cost and limited access to healthcare facilities for low-income populations. 

Team DIT

Dar-es-salaam Institute of Technology

Members: Michael Michael, Erick Shayo, Deograss Widambe, Erick Msigwa, George Mushi

Faculty Advisor: Mr Gilbert Mboya

Problem Statement: The system aims to solve the issue of patients having to carry physical copies of their medical records and drug information while traveling, by providing them with digital access to this information globally.

Team Pathfinder 

Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH)

Members: Taoheed Oyewo(Lead Innovator) Emmanuel Ayanwole John Coker Patrick Obumselu  and Victoria Akintayo

Faculty Advisors: Professor Tesleem Asafa

Problem Statement: Nigeria has the highest rates of unsafe defecation with around 46 million residents practicing open defecation (UNICEF 2020). This practice is detrimental to the health of Nigerians, particularly children, girls, and people with disabilities. 

Team Stark

University of Lagos

Members: Olorundara Akojede, Ifeoluwa Ajayi

Faculty Advisors: Dr. Olawale Ajibola, Engr. William Baah

Problem StatementHypothermia causes about 67% of global neonatal deaths. Regular incubators have proved to be effective in reducing this percentage in developed countries. However, regular incubators were not designed for healthcare centers in low-resource regions. We build a cost-effective incubator from locally sourced materials that tackles specific needs.

Team Test TSH

Rice University

Members: Alex David, Elise Erickson, Vanshika Jhonsa, Margaret Li, and Alison Maniace

Faculty Advisors: Dr. Kristina Tebo, Dr. Selorm Dei-Tutu, Dr. Jasmine Nejad, Dr. Meaghan Bond, and Dr. Sabia Abidi

Problem Statement: In congenital hypothyroidism, the thyroid is underactive or absent at birth. Early thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) screening allows for early treatment and prevents irreversible impairments, but is inaccessible in low-resource settings. We aim to create a low-cost, sensitive, portable, and rapid screening device that detects abnormal TSH levels.

Texas Engineering World Health (TEWH)

University of Texas at Austin 

Members: Maansi Srinivasan, Lizzy Young, Manasa Sripati, Varsha Kotamreddy, Sriya Cheemalamarrri, Arshiya Choudhary, Vipash Nanda, Dhara Purohit

Faculty Advisors: Dr. Steven Abrams, M.D., Timothy Farmer, MSc, RRT-NPS, Joe Najmi 

Problem Statement: In low-income countries, the lack of dependable and reasonably priced neonatal incubators poses a major threat to the survival of sick and premature babies. This initiative aims to create an inexpensive neonatal transport incubator for Mexico and India by employing recycled computer and automotive hardware. 

Ultraportable ECMO Machine

Queen's University

Members: Julia Funk, Noah Learned, Emma Kim, Darien Gaw

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Claire Davies

Problem Statement: The frequency of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests highlights the need for rapid and affordable intervention in remote and underfunded communities. Applying extracorporeal membrane oxygenation within 20 min of the onset of a cardiac arrest has been shown to increase the survival rate from 9-28%.

Wear Your Helminth

Georgia Institute of Technology

Members: Victoria Brown, Andrew Bohner, Indy Cabeda Diaz

Faculty Advisors: Dr. James Stubbs, Dr. Kelsey Kubelick

Problem Statement:  Soil Transmitted Helminth infection is a parasitic disease that causes an avoidable infectious burden on a population. The Stool Stomper is a preparation device created to aid lab technicians in preparing stool samples using the Kato-Katz technique by pressing samples with uniform pressure, ensuring a consistent spread before microscopic analysis.

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