Medbot was first inspired by the situation where a loved one was in an emergency medical situation or needed first aid, but there were no health care workers immediately present. Our bot allows the user to type in symptoms or the ailment itself, and see treatment advice (STRETCH: or a red alert, if a condition is severe). It’s an immediate, simple solution that responds by detailing treatments and necessary actions.

What it does

Allows users to “symptom check” by typing in keywords such as “fever” or “nausea”, and returning conditions associated with those symptoms.

Allows users to find advice immediately by typing the name of their condition directly.

Detailed instructions are stored in our local databases so precious time is saved to react in the appropriate manner, (STRETCH: with an enhancement to list the most likely ailments per patient’s age first.)

If a medical professional is needed to be contacted immediately, MedBot allows the user to share their current location and the nearest hospital is found with a link to Maps.

How we built it

We used a bot created on Gupshup and published to Messenger and Telegram. We created code that contains an array that is sorted by holding the arrays of symptoms and arrays of treatments for each condition. These arrays are accessed by for loops throughout the code to scan for a matching symptom. Our code determines whether input is a symptom or condition, and looks for conditions in the database that are associated with that symptom and displays them in survey format for the user to select from to get treatment. If it is a condition initially entered, it returns an entry about treatment and advice. The map and location finding feature checks to see if the response is in the form of a location, and if it is, it calculates the nearest hospital using latitude and longitude. This is used if the response to a condition is to seek immediate medical attention from a professional.

Challenges we ran into

Loading “extras” such as images and location into the bot. We ran into issues with publishing the bot created on Gupshup to Telegram and Messenger at first because they both specialized in different features, like the custom keyboard or adding images to better explain how a first aid treatment is executed immediately. We experimented with @ImageBot, but found that the results were compiled from the Web and unreliable to use because the user would have to search for the image. Instead, our solution was to add an image to an array and have it activate and send the image whenever that specific emergency is triggered. (This feature still needs work, and is not part of the published version)

Accomplishments that we're proud of

Intuitive User Interface

Informative local database which could be used offline if we developed a mobile app

What we learned

From our experience coding Medbot, our group learned how to take advantage of the intuitive interface provided by a bot in order to provide quickly and easily accessible advice.

What's next for Medbot

  • Mobile App
  • Link directly to phone for emergency dial
  • Work offline, for outdoors activities: hikers, campers, climbers etc. (key demographic)
  • Edited UI with . . .
    • "friendlier" interface
    • “red alerts” for medical emergencies
  • Polished entrance, including disclaimer regarding self diagnosis
  • Spell check and “similar keywords”
    • Reduce possibility of user frustration if, for example, they type in “trouble breathing” and the current key is “difficulty breathing”
  • Update database with more conditions and more detailed condition descriptions
  • Allow users to enter age and gender and list conditions by likeliness given this data
  • Fine-tune hospital find function to deal with “Home” location bug
  • Simplify language + Add translate function to make app more universally accessible.

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