At TED2014 in Vancouver, TED Senior Fellows Eric Berlow, David Gurman and Kaustuv De Biswas debuted MAPPR – a cloud-based tool that lets anyone create and publish shareable, interactive network visualizations on the web. (See “How data constellations tell a story: MAPPing the TED Fellows network and the conflict in Syria“) Since then, the company has embarked on a variety of projects, applying MAPPR to understand everything from creative traits among high performers in the United States to marine ecosystems off the coast of Chile and healthcare delivery systems in India.
Here at TEDGlobal, Senior Fellows Kaustuv De Biswas and Anthony Vipin Das, consultant ophthalmologist at the LV Prasad Eye Institute, India, sat down and created a MAPP for the Eye Institute’s 127 clinics spread across the four states of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Karnataka, in India (see video above). The MAPP helps visualize the infrastructure and referral interactions in eye-care delivery services in real time. We asked them to tell us more.
First of all, what does the LV Prasad Eye Institute do?
Vipin: LV Prasad Eye Institute is a WHO Collaborating Center for Prevention of Blindness, a not-for-profit organization based in Hyderabad, India, that has served over 18 million patients in the past 27 years. Currently, we have 127 eye care centers across four states in India, with a unique innovative Eye Health Pyramid Model in which vision centers in remote rural villages feed into more centralized secondary centers called the Village Vision Complex — which are in turn connected to tertiary centers in cities. This referral pattern helps deliver eye care services more efficiently to the under-served in rural India.
How will MAPPR help your work?
Vipin: Using MAPPR, we were able to quickly develop a prototype MAPP of our network to visualize connectivity between the different centers, patient movement, referrals, and a host of other factors relating to how these centers interact. In the future, we will be able to integrate this with our existing electronic medical record system — EyeSmart EMR — for real-time analysis. Another exciting possibility would be to overlay performance metrics on top of these networks, which will let us design optimal solutions for eye care delivery.
Kaustuv, how else are you using MAPPR to help Fellows with health care projects?
Kaustuv: We’ve built a prototype for UK-based ophthalmologist Andrew Bastawrous [see his TED Talk: "Get your next eye exam on a smartphone"], who’s researching efficient healthcare delivery networks in Lima, Peru. It maps clinics, nursing homes, and hospitals as a large dynamic referral network. When a patient visits a clinic, they’re either serviced there or referred to another location based on the severity of the case and availability of trained staff. MAPPR immediately enables the visualization of these referral networks. Right now, we’re working on algorithms and interfaces to identify possible bottlenecks in the system, to help balance resources in real time. Along with Vipin, we’re also exploring opportunities with the Healthcare Innovation Cell, Ministry of Health, Government of Telangana, to apply modern data science approaches to healthcare delivery in India.
Below: see a MAPPR prototype of the Lima Network with Andrew Bastawrous.