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OSU Center for Health Sciences News

Thursday, Nov. 19, 2015

Entrepreneurs, health providers create apps, ideas to improve rural health care

Dave Largent, of Atlanta, left, Alekhya  Mathukumilli and Ravi Subramanian work on a software project during the Rural  Healthcare Innovation Weekend in downtown Tulsa.
Dave Largent, of Atlanta, left, Alekhya Mathukumilli and Ravi Subramanian work on a software project during the Rural Healthcare Innovation Weekend in downtown Tulsa.

An automated system to take patients’ vitals. A mobile app to link rural Oklahomans with transportation to doctor visits. A software program that can streamline finance management for rural hospitals. And an algorithm that can help predict if a diabetic has retinopathy by analyzing their blood.

These are among nine ideas transformed into viable solutions produced at the Rural Healthcare Innovation Weekend hosted in downtown Tulsa by OSU Center for Health Systems Innovation on Nov. 13-15.

The event brought together more than 90 aspiring entrepreneurs, technology developers, health care providers and other professionals from a variety of disciplines for an intensive weekend of brainstorming, development and creativity focused on improving access and delivery of health care to rural areas.

“Our overarching goal is to improve access to and delivery of rural health care in Oklahoma. It is amazing that we can get more than 90 people to donate their time over a weekend to transforming health care. It really speaks to their commitment to this important issue,” said William Paiva, Ph.D., CHSI executive director. “This event is a unique way to put ideas that address this issue into motion through a collaborative hands-on innovation experience. We have come out of this with prototypes and concepts that we can test in the field in rural Oklahoma through CHSI.” Read more.

OSU-CHS faculty addresses female incarceration at national conference


Jason Beaman, D.O., chair and clinical assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, recently made national presentations on his research at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

He presented a poster on his research on female incarceration rates in Oklahoma. The state has the highest rate of female incarceration in the nation.

During the conference, Beaman also participated in a panel discussion about the treatment of transgender inmates.

Research Spotlight: Study focuses on reducing pain, inflammation of the brain


An OSU-CHS researcher is searching for ways to improve pain management and slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Craig W. Stevens, Ph.D., OSU-CHS professor of pharmacology, is analyzing the evolution of opioid receptors in the brain and examining the interaction of medications with immune cells in the brain.

“Opioid analgesic drugs, such as morphine or hydrocodone, attach to protein molecules in the brain called opioid receptors. The amazing thing about these receptors is they exist in all vertebrate animals,” he said. “We are examining how opioid receptors have evolved from the first animals on earth – fish, amphibians and reptiles – all the way through to higher vertebrate animals and humans.”

Research has shown that opioid receptors evolved to become more effective in relieving pain in humans than ever before. By analyzing those evolutionary changes, Stevens envisions developing an artificial opiate receptor for use in pain management that could be introduced into the body via gene therapy. Read more.

OSU-CHS, Physicians Clinics to close for Thanksgiving holiday

OSU-CHS and OSU Physicians Clinics will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26 and Friday, Nov. 27 for the Thanksgiving break.

There will be no classes and all business and academic services offices, including Matthews Bookstore, will be closed throughout that weekend. Regular hours will resume Monday, Nov. 30.

The OSU-CHS library will close at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 25 and resume regular hours at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 28.

Oklahoma Money Matters workshop to discuss debt management

The OSU-CHS Wellness Center is hosting a workshop by Oklahoma Money Matters at noon on Dec. 8 in D-207.

The presentation will include information for students on living on a budget while in college and understanding credit and student loan debt. Oklahoma Money Matters is an initiative of the Oklahoma College Assistance Program, an operating division of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.

Refreshments from Jason’s Deli will be provided. Pre-registration is required by emailing OSU-CHS Health and Wellness Manager Jesse Chaffin or stopping by the wellness center.

Crime prevention tips emphasize stalking awareness

OSU-CHS Security is providing crime prevention tips for students, faculty and staff about stalking.

Stalking is a pattern of repeated, unwanted attention, harassment and conduct and can include frequent unwanted and frightening communication by phone, mail or email and constantly being followed or watched. Stalking should be taken seriously and reported to Campus Security. It is a crime, even in the absence of physical injury.

OSU-CHS Security advises victims to maintain detailed notes about the stalking conduct, such as dates, times, places, actions or threats. Keep all recorded telephone messages, emails, gifts, letters or notes that have been sent. Also, keep a list of emergency phone numbers handy that include the police, immediate family members, friends or coworkers. To learn more about stalking, visit the OSU-CHS Security website or 1is2manyCHS. In the event of an emergency on campus, call 918-625-8592.