Emerging Designs course 2021

AMRI Remote – A mobile MRI system for distant healthcare

The students envision that, in 2030, the most complex medical services of today, will feel as easy as a stroll in your backyard.
Image of a mobile MRI vehicle in front of a rural home

Team's description of the project

Ageing population in the Nordics is a phenomenon that has topped every megatrend report for quite some time now. But what’s less spoken about is the fact that due to the advancement of medical technology the ‘quality of health’ of the elderly is increasingly improving which creates a massive strain on non-urgent healthcare systems. One such system is the diagnostic and preventive MRI.

After conversations with doctors and nurses we realized that the threshold for sending elderly patients for an MRI was extremely low (in Finland). Which meant a lot of these patients were asked to get MRI’s done often. Another Nordic phenomenon important to mention here is the population distribution – more than 65% of the population in remote areas is elderly, these remote areas are extremely sparsely populated and most of these residents rely on a central hospital which is hundreds of kilometres away.

Considering the challenges of multiple actors in relation to one MRI, we choose to work with a new low-field mobile MRI technology – AMRI, which is being developed at Aalto University. This technology makes the MRI unit smaller, lighter and mobile. Owing to this, we designed a new service platform – AMRI Remote. We aim to achieve a systemic healthcare transition beyond logistic, monetary, clinical or geographical limitations.

Our platform (AMRI Remote) works across the lifecycle of an MRI. In 2030, MRI comes home. (whichever corner of the country that it may be) This service tries to minimize time, effort and money an otherwise complex and tedious process demands. AMRI Remote functions across the three largest northernmost hospitals in Finland, Sweden and Norway optimizing the geographical, cultural and systematic proximity between the three. To know more about the larger benefits of this service, see images in the gallery below.

How AMRI Remote works in a gist

  • When a patient visits their local doctor and they see the need for an MRI, all the doctor needs to do is make a request on the AMRI Remote platform
  • The algorithm of the platform then filters through all the requests and creates best routes for AMRI vans leaving from all three hospitals
  • The platform is connected to each patients local health system (i.e. Omakanta for a patient in Finland)
  • The van then sets out on its route to serve the assigned requests
  • It returns to its home hospital on completion of the route
  • The reports are generated by this hospital in charge and uploaded on the system
  • The platform recognizes the nationality of the patient and asks to transfer the report to their own health system for their doctors to see (again, Omakanta for a patient in Finland)
  • The patient can view all their reports and data on their own profile as per usual. To see this process in context, please watch the video below.

In the autumn of 2021 students enrolled in Emerging Designs course were given a brief to design concept for tackling problems in the healthcare system. The focus was on developing healthcare and social care in sparsely populated areas of the Nordics, visioned in 2030 with distance spanning solutions. Altogether seven concepts were created and AMRI Remote is one of them. 

Team members

Falguni Purohit (India)

Service designer

Xiaorui Zhang (China)

Industrial designer

Vili Sihvola (Finland)

Industrial designer

More about the course and the related study programmes

a house in the middle of nowhere in the middle of the night with stars showing in the sky and light coming from the house

Emerging Designs course 2021

During Emerging Designs course seven student teams developed conceptual solutions for developing health care and social care in the rural areas. The focus of design work was in the Nordic countries, which vision in 2030 to be the most sustainable and integrated region in the world. Here you find the students' proposals with detailed descriptions.

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Collaborative and Industrial Design - Design, Master of Arts (Art and Design)

The studies in Collaborative and Industrial Design (CoID) focus on design's role in society. Students develop skills enabling them to work as design experts and leaders, entrepreneurs, and innovators in a range of roles within industry, business, communities, education, and public sector.

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International Design Business Management, Master of Arts (Art and Design)

IDBM is a pioneering study programme that embodies the vision of Aalto University by integrating design and technology with global business development.

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Department of Design

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One of the most prestigious universities in its fields. We educate our students to create imaginative, collaborative, compassionate and unconventional approaches to the most pressing challenges of today.

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