Today is history in the making with the launch of Stethee, the world’s first Artificial Intelligence (AI)-enabled stethoscope system, a made in Malaysia medical device for the global market. Stethee is also the first device in the world that evolved from the traditional stethoscope which has not been updated in the last 200 years. It will disrupt how we listen to the heart and lungs with detailed and accurate analysis. This cutting edge and innovative stethoscope will also empower remote and rural healthcare through simple and yet precise surveillance and detection of heart and lung diseases.
The Stethee system includes three core products: the Stethee Pro, Stethee Vet and Stethee Edu. The Stethee Pro has received clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration, one of the most stringent regulators in the world, for use by medical and healthcare professionals.
I was first introduced to Dr Nayyar Hussain, founder and CEO of M3DICINE back in June 2016 by Mr Jaffri Ibrahim, CEO of CREST (Collaborative Research in Engineering, Science and Technology).
Through strategic partnerships between MOH Malaysia, Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), CREST and M3DICINE which was facilitated by the Telemedicine Development Group (TDG), this state-of-art Stethee is proudly made in Malaysia for the global market. TDG is co-chaired by the DG of Health and Dato Sri Dr Halim Shafie, Chairman of the Malaysian Communications & Multimedia Commission (MCMC) and provides a platform for digital innovation, digital health services ecosystem and collaborative partnerships which will put Malaysia on the world map as a medical device hub.
The Stethee is designed to work as easily as a traditional stethoscope, allowing users to listen to heart and lung sounds with sophisticated amplification and filtering technology. The recordings can then be transmitted to a smart device (i.e. any smartphone or a tablet) via Bluetooth technology, and analysed to build a personal biometric signature for each patient, and detect the presence of heart or lung diseases.
Artificial Intelligence and Data Analytics (Aida), the technology platform behind the Stethee AI engine, also automatically tags geo-location and aggregate environmental data (temperature, humidity, pollen count, pollutant index) for analysis by healthcare professionals. Aida analyses this data (which is encrypted and anonymized) and is able to provide doctors, vets and healthcare professionals with quantitative clinically actionable data.
The potential for Stethee to be used in remote and rural areas of Malaysia is enormous and endless, bringing high quality healthcare to the urban and rural areas instantly. A group of medical practitioners and clinical researchers at MOH’s Clinical Research Centre (CRC), Perak is currently involved in the clinical evaluation of the Stethee Pro stethoscope. I look forward to more disruptive technology from our digital healthcare technology innovators, as we embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution where the fusion of technologies blurs the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres.
Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah
Director General of Health Malaysia