Featured Falcon: Debate Captain Rohin Shah presents at American Medical Informatics Association Symposium

Featured Falcon: Debate Captain Rohin Shah presents at American Medical Informatics Association Symposium

Allison Sweeney, Staff Writer

Rohin Shah is a senior in SMCS leveraging technology and data to improve healthcare possibilities by streamlining a shared language between different medical devices and systems. He completed his summer internship at the National Institute of Science & Technology (NIST) in the Information Technology Lab to address a critical and commonly understated issue of interoperability in healthcare. He received the distinction of presenting his work to a body of medical professionals, scholars, and students alike at the AMIA’s annual symposium on Nov. 7, 2022. 


What is healthcare interoperability?

Healthcare interoperability stems from the problem that medical devices and systems are often unable to communicate with each other and exchange information. They don’t speak a common language. If I wasn’t speaking to you in a language you knew, we would be unable to communicate. It’s very similar to the concept of healthcare interoperability.


What was the focus of your research?

My work was focused on conformance testing, which essentially makes sure that a medical device and information system are operating on the same standard. That standard is called the Wireless Communications Standard Protocol (WCSP). When a message is received by a system, it should be able to interpret and make use of the communication. Rigorous conformance testing helps ensure effective usage & implementation of the WCSP standards. 


What was the turnout to your presentation and what were the demographics like?

There were professionals in academia, government, and industry, as well as students.


How did your research reach the AMIA?

Many of their past publications significantly informed my work, so, as an academic venue, it felt almost like a perfect fit for the nature of my work.


What excites you about the future of healthcare interoperability?

Interoperability in healthcare serves as a catalyst for a better world for a better healthcare experience” with “as an enabler of better healthcare experiences and patient outcomes


How did the SMCS program prepare you for the AIMA Symposium?

“SMCS provided me with the technical and presentational skills to both perform my research and present it to a broad audience.  The many, distinct professional experiences available through the SMCS program allowed me to succeed in my internship, strengthen my technical knowledge, and advance my skill set in a wide range of ways.”


What is a takeaway from your experience at the AIMA Symposium?

At this event in particular with many students, there was an emphasis on fostering a connection between participants. It was humbling to be there and the science was fascinating, but speaking with the people was just as significant. Research is an interdisciplinary and collaborative process to build connections that last.