Héctor Martinez-Luna


National Network of Youth Activities in Science and Technology in Mexico (laREDMex)

Compatibility of DeAlta mobile app with Mexico’s healthcare system: Prevention of drug-resistant Tubercolosis via patient-physician communication


Patient-physician communication, as a means to ensure therapeutic adherence and early diagnosis of medical deterioration, is indispensable for the prevention of drug resistance. However, deficient healthcare in developing countries limits patient-physician communication. In Mexico, for example, oversaturated public hospitals force physicians to sacrifice time with patients. This jeopardizes the treatment of thousands of patients worldwide and facilitates the incidence of resistance to diseases such as Tuberculosis (TB). To address this problem, an app that strengthens patient-physician communication alongside regular check-ups was developed and research was conducted to assess this app’s compatibility with Mexican healthcare workers. The app, called DeAlta , prompts patients to log their symptoms and medication and re-directs this constantly updated data to their physicians, who can then use it to detect early signs of TB resistance. Close-ended surveys were applied to dozens of healthcare workers and their responses were used to calculate 27 DCS (DeAlta Compatibility Scores); future research for this project includes the expansion of said survey to that of a nationally-representative sample. Interviews with TB experts were also carried out and a DeAlta prototype was developed. The registered DCS mean falls within the margins of satisfactory compatibility, which demonstrates DeAlta’s compatibility with Mexico’s healthcare to prevent drug-resistant TB and suggests a strong potential to prevent other non-TB variants of drug resistance.