Livin' on the MDedge

Pathogenic ball pits, zombie bacteria, and OTC beer


 

A seat in the oval office

No, not that seat, and not the Oval Office. This is LOTME, after all, not Politico. The “seat” we’re talking about is a cardiovascular monitoring system, and “oval office” is just a euphemism for a toilet.

A. Sue Weisler/Rochester Institute of Technology

Nicholas Conn is the founder and CEO of Heart Health Intelligence, which has developed a toilet-seat based cardiovascular monitoring system.

Here’s the deal: A company called Heart Health Intelligence (See? Intelligence is involved, so clearly we’re not talking about politics) has developed a toilet seat equipped “with an integrated electrocardiogram, ballistocardiogram , and photoplethysmogram … capable of clinical-grade measurements of systolic and diastolic blood pressure, stroke volume, and peripheral blood oxygenation.” Wait, ballistocardiogram? That sounds like something from that show House; it sounds too cool to pass up: “Chase, you idiot, why didn’t you do that ballistocardiogram I ordered?”

The idea is to prevent expensive readmissions by keeping track of patients with heart failure after they leave the hospital in a way that fits into their daily routine and ensures adherence.

It would cost about $200,000 to provide 150 heart failure patients with the toilet seats when they left the hospital, the company estimated, but the penalties from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for readmitting 150 patients come to $500,000 a year. Thus saving money by flushing it down the toilet.

So it looks like we were talking about politics after all. An intelligent toilet seat is like the Oval Office because, in both cases, the buck stops here.

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