The role of technology and engineering models in transforming healthcare

Misha Pavel, Holly Brugge Jimison, Howard D. Wactlar, Tamara L. Hayes, Will Barkis, Julia Skapik, Jeffrey Kaye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


The healthcare system is in crisis due to challenges including escalating costs, the inconsistent provision of care, an aging population, and high burden of chronic disease related to health behaviors. Mitigating this crisis will require a major transformation of healthcare to be proactive, preventive, patient-centered, and evidence-based with a focus on improving quality-of-life. Information technology, networking, and biomedical engineering are likely to be essential in making this transformation possible with the help of advances, such as sensor technology, mobile computing, machine learning, etc. This paper has three themes: 1) motivation for a transformation of healthcare; 2) description of how information technology and engineering can support this transformation with the help of computational models; and 3) a technical overview of several research areas that illustrate the need for mathematical modeling approaches, ranging from sparse sampling to behavioral phenotyping and early detection. A key tenet of this paper concerns complementing prior work on patient-specific modeling and simulation by modeling neuropsychological, behavioral, and social phenomena. The resulting models, in combination with frequent or continuous measurements, are likely to be key components of health interventions to enhance health and wellbeing and the provision of healthcare.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6490450
Pages (from-to)156-177
Number of pages22
JournalIEEE Reviews in Biomedical Engineering
StatePublished - 2013


  • Computational modeling
  • medical information systems
  • medical robotics
  • pervasive computing
  • remote monitoring
  • smart home

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering


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