Tennis star Andy Murray has turned his focus to global health after becoming an ambassador for the Digital Health & Care Institute (DCI).
The Eurocentral-based project’s portfolio is worth over £4 million engaging more than 50 companies, 15 Scottish universities, 25 third sector organisations and more than 1,000 members from over 20 countries.
Building on his personal interest in digital technologies to improve and monitor health and wellbeing, and with his recent experiences of working with start-up companies in the health, sport and wearable technology markets, Murray’s philanthropic involvement will raise awareness of DHI’s work with international digital health entrepreneurs and investors.
He will also promote skills, educational and career opportunities in this emerging market for young people, as well as working with the NHS across the UK on campaigns addressing childhood obesity.
The two-time Wimbledon champion said: “My partnership with DHI has come about because I am really interested in how digital technologies can improve health.
“I obviously have a personal interest in that area because anything that can improve my own health will only improve my performance on court.
“The work DHI are doing is changing lives and solving some really important health and care challenges, at home and abroad, and I am proud to be supporting their work.”
One of DHI’s current projects uses the camera and technology from Microsoft’s Kinect motion controller to detect patient vital signs remotely.
The ability to assess heart rate and blood oxygen levels at a distance using facial recognition could reduce the need for clipped-on devices and allow for measuring multiple people at once in real-time.
This will help clinicians and carers to identify priority cases quicker and carry out routine monitoring more efficiently.
DHI CEO Justene Ewing said: “It’s inspiring to have someone of Andy’s profile and calibre committing to a partnership with us to promote digital health in Scotland, with all the potential benefits it can provide to the health and wellbeing of people at home and abroad.”