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Human Research Program

Assisted Medical Procedures (AMP)

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

The Assisted Medical Procedures system (AMP) is an electronic system that will help crewmembers select the appropriate medical procedure for a particular medical encounter, as well as guide them through that procedure. The system will be used for all medical encounters, especially during periods of exploration missions when contact with ground resources (e.g., flight surgeon) will be either minimal or absent. During these periods of autonomous medical care, the crew will need such a system for medical events, be they urgent or non-urgent. Development of the AMP addresses several risks stated in the Critical Path Roadmap (CPR; also known as the NASA Bioastronautics Roadmap [NASA/SP-2004-6113]). The following list explains the risks and how the AMP will address them. Risk #17: Monitoring and Prevention. The risk of serious medical events may increase due to inadequate monitoring and prevention capabilities. The AMP will enable astronaut crew medical officers (CMOs) to properly monitor the health of each crewmember and subsequently provide direction to prevent medical issues from arising during exploration missions. Risk #20: Ambulatory Care. Impaired performance and increased risk to crew health and mission may occur due to lack of capability to diagnose and treat minor illnesses. The AMP will have clinical decision support (CDS) logic. Within the scope of this project, CDS is defined as an active knowledge system which uses patient data, both collected and stored, to generate case-specific diagnostic and treatment advice. The CDS within the AMP will then provide the CMO with treatment procedures to be executed on the ill crewmember. This action will decrease mission risk and increase crew performance. Risk #22: Medical Informatics, Technologies, and Support Systems. Limited communication capability during space flight results in the compromised ability to provide medical care, and may have adverse consequences for crew health. The AMP will consist of CDS logic and procedure execution support logic that will enable CMOs to autonomously manage medical events, especially during periods of exploration missions when contact with ground resources (e.g., flight surgeon) is either minimal or absent. Risk #23: Medical Skill Training and Maintenance. Inability to perform required medical procedures may result from inadequate crew medical skills or medical training. The AMP will be able to provide “just-in-time” instruction to CMOs in the absence of remote guidance instruction from ground-based subject matter experts (SMEs). The instruction material provided by the AMP will be generated by SMEs and thus fill any gaps in crew medical skills or medical training. The AMP is a component of the Exploration Medical System Demonstration (EMSD) Operational Concept Document [JSC 66295]). The initial project charter for the EMSD includes the execution of a Ground Demonstration, to be conducted in a ground-based flight analog environment, and a Flight Demonstration, to be conducted in-flight aboard the International Space Station (ISS). More »

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