Interdisciplinary
Innovative
Award
2016
Dr Tamás Haidegger

Dr Tamás Haidegger holds two Master’s degrees (summa cum laude) from the Budapest University of Technology and Economics in Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering. His Ph.D. thesis was based on a neurosurgical robot he helped develop when he was a visiting scholar at Johns Hopkins University. His main field of research is control and teleoperation of surgical robots, image-guided therapy, and supportive medical technologies.

Currently, he is an associate professor at the Óbuda University, serving as the director of the University Research, Innovation and Service Center, and as the technical lead of medical robotics research at the Antal Bejczy Center for Intelligent Robotics. He is also a research area manager at the Austrian Center of Medical Innovation and Technology, working on minimally invasive surgical simulation and training, medical robotics, and usability and workflow assessment through ontologies.

Dr Haidegger is an active member of various professional organizations, including the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, IEEE EMBC, IEEE SMC, and euRobotics aisbl. He is a national delegate to an ISO/IEC standardization committee focusing on the safety and performance of medical robots. He has co-authored more than 160 peer-reviewed papers published at various scientific meetings and in conference proceedings, referred journals, and books in the field of biomedical and control engineering, and computer-integrated surgery.

He is the co-founder and co-CEO (together with Péter Róna) of HandInScan. They are working together with Semmelweis University, the HUG University Hospital Geneva, and the World Health Organization.

The Semmelweis Hand Hygiene Scanner – a project of Dr Haidegger and the HandInScan team, – provides users with software-based, objective, and personalised feedback on the quality of hand hygiene. The innovative technology is based on validated, evidence-based IT methods, ensuring real-time evaluation of hand rubbing, which is a compulsory protocol at healthcare institutions, biotech facilities, and in the food industry.

The HandInScan team encourages behavioural changes by providing personalised training and audit services for the users. Their solution introduces personal accountability through an objective reporting system that can be fully integrated into a hospital information system. The technology has been tested on over 50,000 healthcare workers.

160 years after Ignác Semmelweis discovered the importance of hand hygiene in 1858, it is still crucial to effectively teach and maintain proper hand disinfection techniques. The Semmelweis Scanner makes a huge effort to achieve this goal by adapting a digital and reliable tool to introduce objective hand hygiene control in every stage of the medical treatment.

The general objective of the Semmelweis Hand Hygiene Solution is to provide quality-assured hand hygiene control to people – absolutely in line with the main goal of the Gran Prize to encourage and award the invention of solutions improving the quality of human life.