CASE STUDY: Real-Time Localization at the UCSD Department of Radiation Medicine and Applied Science

February 12, 2018

Prerequisite: None

Andrew Cardno

Chief Technology Officer


Todd Pawlicki


Vice-Chair and Director, Medical Physics and Technology

University of California, San Diego

A hospital contains many moving objects, including patients, doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, intravenous fluids, beds, wheelchairs, CT scanners, and many other moveable devices. In clinical practice, all of these moving objects need to be coordinated to deliver safe and efficient healthcare services. Currently, coordination is left to the people in the process to figure out. Within the specialty of Radiation Oncology, there are additional layers of coordination to treat cancer with radiation. These include additional equipment (e.g., linear accelerators, brachytherapy delivery systems, immobilization devices, etc.), multiple health professionals, and patients returning for daily treatments over several weeks.

In December 2016, VizExplorer and the Department of Radiation Medicine and Applied Sciences started a collaboration to address the issue of coordination in Radiation Oncology. The collaboration is also with VMWare with the goal to create and deploy a secure real-time localization system (RTLS) that ties together spatially aware rules with data streams from the Radiation Oncology environment. In this session you will learn about the project goals and methods of development as well as roadblocks encountered along the way and how they were overcome. Included in the discussion will be the importance of security and the complexities of operating an RTLS in clinical environments as well as other potential clinical benefits such as predictive modeling of patient safety and automated patient scheduling that are afforded by accurate localization of people and equipment in time and space.

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