Change is a group at the University of Washington exploring how technology
can improve the lives of underserved populations in low-income regions.

Nancy Puttkammer: Development of an Electronic Medical Record Based Alert for Risk of HIV Treatment Failure

January 26th, 2015 by Trevor Perrier

What: Nancy Puttkammer: Development of an Electronic Medical Record Based Alert for Risk of HIV Treatment Failure in a Low-Resource Setting

When: Tuesday, Jan 27 at 12pm

Where: The Allen Center, CSE 203

Please join us for this week’s Change Seminar.  This week Nancy Puttkammer, MPH, PhD will be talking about development of an alert to signal patients at risk of HIV antiretroviral therapy (ART) failure, within the iSanté electronic medical record system in Haiti.

Please note that this quarter we will be meeting every other Tuesday so the next meeting will not be until Tuesday Feb 10.


The scale up of electronic medical record (EMR) systems in resource-limited settings can help clinicians monitor patients’ adherence to HIV antiretroviral therapy (ART) and identify patients at risk of future ART failure, allowing resources to be targeted to those most at risk. Our study involved the iSanté EMR in Haiti, a large-scale system implemented in more than 100 sites in Haiti. We identified a simple prediction model for ART failure based on ART adherence measures and other patient characteristics. The selected prediction model was used to generate a risk score, and its ability to differentiate ART failure risk was tested. This risk score could be used as the basis for an automated ART adherence alert within the iSanté EMR. Such an alert could help clinicians identify patients at high risk of ART failure so that they can be targeted with adherence support interventions, before ART failure occurs.


About the speaker:

Nancy Puttkammer, MPH, PhD is a health services researcher with a strong interest in strengthening health information systems in low resource settings. Dr. Puttkammer serves as a Research and Evaluation Advisor at the International Training and Education Center for Health (I-TECH) within the UW Department of Global Health. In this capacity, she oversees evaluation of projects in Haiti and Kenya for national scale-up of electronic medical records and laboratory information systems. Her research has involved use of patient-level data from electronic medical records at multiple levels, including data use by clinicians for improved patient management, data use by program managers to guide facility-level quality improvement strategies, and data use by policy makers to guide national planning and resource allocation. She has also participated in cost evaluation for health information systems. Dr. Puttkammer has worked within HIV care and treatment programs for more than 20 years in the US, Africa, and the Caribbean region.

Computer Science in the DPRK – Will Scott

January 12th, 2015 by Trevor Perrier

What:  Computer Science in the DPRK – Will Scott

When: Tuesday, Jan 13 at 12pm

Where: The Allen Center, CSE 203

Please join us for the first Change Seminar of winter quarter.  We are excited to have Will Scott from the networks lab in CSE come and talk about his experiences teaching computer science at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology in the fall of 2013 and 2014.

Please note that this quarter we will be meeting every other Tuesday so the next meeting will not be until Tuesday January 27.


This talk will reflect on teaching Computer Science in Pyongyang over the last two years, and look at how technology has been integrated into civilian life in the DPRK. Remaining an extremely isolated country, many people would be surprised to hear that cellphones have become commonplace within the capitol, let alone that the country invests in custom hardware and software. I’ll talk through the current state of desktop and mobile technology in pyongyang, and what’s changing.

From redstar OS, a custom redhat-derived linux desktop and server environment, to the arirang cellphone and tablet, technology in the DPRK is different from what you are likely to see anywhere else in the world. Most systems are not widely available, and exist as much in rumor as reality. Partially from language barrier, and partially due to restrictive import, export, and communication policies, there are large gaps and large amounts of misinformation around most aspects of the country.

About the speaker:

Will Scott is graduate student in the networks lab in Computer Science and Engineering at UW.  He’s research focus on removing the limitations on information so the end user can have more control over their data and applications.  He has spent the last two falls teaching Computer Science, specifically Operating Systems and Databases, to undergraduates at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology. In the course of life in Pyongyang, Will has been able to observe the growing prevalence of mobile technology, and get a first-hand look at the state of consumer technology in the country.

Justin Iwasaki – Primary care innovation in the United States: Tribal Health Centers + Affordable Care Act

November 24th, 2014 by Trevor Perrier

What:  Justin Iwasaki –  Primary care innovation in the United States:  Tribal Health Centers + Affordable Care Act

When: Tuesday, Nov 25 at 12pm

Where: The Allen Center, CSE 203

Please join us for this weeks Change Seminar.  This week Justin Iwasaki MD MPH will be talking about exciting new opportunities for primary health care he is looking to implement as director of the Lummi Tribal Health Center on the Lummi Nation near Bellingham, WA.


The Affordable Care Act has created an unprecedented financial opportunity for Tribal Health Centers to be centers for primary care innovation. The Indian Health Service provides a capitated payment to Tribal Health Centers well above the range of most leading direct primary care organizations. With Medicaid expansion, many more tribal members have become eligible for benefits with very healthy reimbursement rates unique to Tribal Health Clinics. These two factors have created a financial model for Tribal Health Centers allowing them to fulfill many of the needs most primary care clinics cannot afford to provide.  The Lummi Nation has recognized these unique opportunities and is in the process of developing new methods for improving healthcare delivery to its people. We are exploring ways technology can address culturally appropriate strategies to answer two fundamental questions for our patients:

  1. Do I need to see a doctor?
  2. When and where should I be seen?

About the speaker:

Dr. Iwasaki is the Director of the Lummi Tribal Health Center located on the Lummi Nation near Bellingham, WA. The health center provides medical, dental, X-ray, laboratory, pharmacy, social work, behavioral health, and health benefits services to approximately 5000 Native American patients per year. Prior to this he completed a family medicine residency at the University of Washington with areas of concentration in global health and bioinformatics. He has worked across East Africa in healthcare delivery, social enterprise and impact investing. As a medical student he won Harvard Business School’s Social Venture Competition and launched a for-profit social enterprise in Tanzania to bring clean water to urban slums. Prior to medical school he worked in the design shop for the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH).

Elizabeth Scott and Alex McGee: Global Health and E-Learning in Low Resource Settings

November 17th, 2014 by Trevor Perrier

What:  Global Health and E-Learning in Low Resource Settings

When: Tuesday, Nov 18 at 12pm

Where: The Allen Center, CSE 203

Please join us Change this week.  Elizabeth Scott and Alex McGee from the Department of Global health’s E-learning Program will be talking about their work and experiences in deploying educational content for health workers.


The University of Washington, Department of Global Health’s E-learning Program (EDGH) plans, develops, and supports a variety of e-learning and web-based products in support of global health programs. They specialize in designing blended learning, including real-time and self-paced courses for health workers, delivered in international, resource-limited settings. Elizabeth Scott, Senior E-learning Developer and Alex McGee, Managing Director, will discuss the framework EDGH uses to create programs across the globe, as well as some best practices and key lessons learned from deploying learning programs and products in low resource settings. They will be bringing tablets to demonstrate some of their projects, and sharing key examples of learning programs including: self-paced modules, SMS programs, LMS based courses, and apps.

About the speaker:

Elizabeth Scott, E.d.M. is a learning professional with 10 years of experience in e-learning and blended learning design. She has worked in a variety of professional fields (developing e-learning products) including: non-profit, consulting, retail, academia, and global health. She has worked with business and global health leaders, key stakeholders, and project teams to plan, design, develop, and implement interactive, training solutions for a variety of e-learning and blended learning products in support of organizational needs. Elizabeth has extensive knowledge in adult learning theory and pedagogy and uses instructional design skills, graphic design skills, technical skills, writing, and presentation skills to produce on-target solutions that support the project’s needs. Her specialty is in designing e-learning and blended learning solutions, including real-time and self-paced courses, delivered in international and resource-limited settings.

Amer Dahmash: Mobiles, Minds and Money

November 2nd, 2014 by Trevor Perrier

What: Mobiles, Minds and Money: mobile technology as a platform for implementing financial behavior change

When: Tuesday, Nov 4 at 12pm

Where: The Allen Center, CSE 203

Please join us at Change this week.  We welcome Amer Dahmash from Juntos Finanzas who will talk about experiences using SMS for financial behavior change in Colombia.


The global ubiquity of mobile phones presents an opportunity to explore the potential of this technology as a tool for implementing lasting behavioral change on a large scale employing techniques from behavioral economics.  This talk presents a 6 month long pilot project carried out by Juntos Finanzas in conjunction with Bancolombia to determine whether behavior change messaging delivered via responsive SMS can alter the savings behavior  of first-time banking customers in Colombia. We discuss the results of the intervention, the technological and design techniques used and show a strong correlation between receiving behavior change messaging and increased savings.  We explore the potential uses of these techniques in other areas such as public health and the pros and cons of SMS vs native mobile apps as a platform for delivering behavior change content.

About the speaker:

Amer Dahmash is a software engineer at Juntos Finanzas in San Carlos, California.  His interests lie in the use of mobile computing to overcome problems in infrastructure in under-developed and low-income areas.  Prior to working with Juntos, Amer cofounded Regalii a venture-backed startup based in Washington Heights in Manhattan working on mobile remittances.