A team of EPAMers earned third place at the B3C hackathon, “Building Bridges, Beating Cancer,” with an early cancer detection chatbot, called “Care Buddy.” The chatbot was created to raise lung cancer awareness among young adults in countries with poor air quality.
Co-hosted by ScanBalt and Novartis, the aim of the hackathon was to find effective, new ideas for reducing cancer care inequalities as outlined in Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan, including inequalities linked to socio-economic status, proximity to care centers and access to cancer knowledge, prevention and diagnosis.
As the leading cause of cancer deaths, lung cancer is particuarly dangerous because it often has no noticable symptoms until it’s in an advanced stage. Therefore, early detection and intervention is crucial.
The “Care Buddy” chatbot was designed to ask questions in a human-like way, allowing users to access information about their local air quality and the risks of smoking to determine whether they are at high-risk for lung cancer. In addition to helping users make data-driven decisions about prevention and treatment, the chatbot collects and processes clean data with AI that it can feed into the healthcare system, which allows for more accurate research.
EPAM’s winning chatbot was submitted by Andrii Hryshutkin, Andrea Bíróné Kircsi, and Aleksandr Mordanov.
“Our initial idea was to democratize knowledge for patients by providing information in their native language and connecting them to resources that can provide the answers and support they need during breast cancer treatment,” said Andrea Bíróné Kircsi, Junior BI Analyst at EPAM. “But during the hackathon, inspired by the oncologist and our mentors, we decided to modify the original idea to focus more on prevention and the deadliest form of cancer, lung cancer. By focusing on saving lives, we can make the greatest impact.”
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