Pocket Doc for Pneumonia is a project designed by researchers at the Center for International Child Health at BC Children’s Hospital. It's a low-cost smartphone tool that uses a light-weight sensor and a data-driven app to assess a child’s vital signs and overall condition, deliver an accurate diagnosis and recommend inexpensive, life-saving treatments such as antibiotics, oxygen and fluids. This powerful diagnostics tool is being designed for and in collaboration with health workers with limited education working in remote and developing parts of the world.

Over the next few years, Dr. Mark Ansermino and his team will design, deploy and validate the Pocket Doc for Pneumonia for use worldwide. It will be tested in south-western Uganda, where the project team has established strong partnerships with groups, including the Ministry of Health.

The Pocket Doc for Pneumonia project is led by Dr. Mark AnserminoDr. Tex Kissoon and Dr. Guy Dumont.

“This is an unprecedented opportunity to change the way we diagnose and treat the leading cause of death of children worldwide,” says Dr. Mark Ansermino, the project lead, an investigator at BC Children’s Hospital and professor in the Department of Anesthesia, Pharmacology and Therapeutics at the University of British Columbia. “This project will enable us to deliver a smart integrated technology platform to help save children with pneumonia.”

Did you know?

  • Childhood pneumonia is the leading cause of death for children under five years of age worldwide.
  • In 2015, at least one million children under the age of five died of pneumonia.
  • Pocket Doc for Pneumonia will save kids’ lives by helping health workers in remote areas accurately diagnose pneumonia and provide life-saving treatments.

We are now launching the project and developing a prototype of an app that can be used to save kids all over the world.


Q&A from Uganda with Dustin Dunsmuir - July 20, 2017
Meet BC Children's Hospital and UBC software developer Dustin Dunsmuir. He's in Uganda where he's working with partner hospitals and medical facilities to develop, test and ultimately begin using the Pocket Doc for Pneumonia.

Can a simple smartphone app stop pneumonia in its tracks? - November 7, 2017
World Pneumonia Day was November 12, 2017. Established in 2009, World Pneumonia Day aims to raise awareness of the impact that the illness has around the world. Globally, pneumonia is the leading infectious killer of children under the age of five and kills an estimated 1 million kids each year.