Carnegie Mellon University


February 26, 2018

#StatMadness: Pitt, CMU Researchers Face-Off Against Caltech in Round One

By Shilo Rea

Stat, a medical and health sciences news outlet, has brought back its bracket-style tournament to pick the best ideas in biomedical science.

This year, research led by the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC has been selected among the 64 research groups to compete. And Carnegie Mellon University’s Baruch Fischhoff was part of the team that created a video game that improves doctors’ recognition and triage of severe trauma patients better than text-based learning

Deepika Mohan, a trauma surgeon at UPMC, came to me a few years ago. She was looking into the problem of inappropriate transfer decisions for patients and was looking for behavioral insights,” said Fischhoff, the Howard Heinz University Professor in the Institute for Politics and Strategy and Department of Engineering and Public Policy.

The team created the game Night Shift with Schell Games, a Pittsburgh-based educational and entertainment game development company that was founded by CMU’s Jesse Schell. The game is designed to tap into the intuitive cognitive processes that rely on pattern recognition and previous experience to make snap decisions using subconscious mental shortcuts – a process called heuristics.

“It is objectively hard to get better from everyday experience,” Fischhoff said.  “Diagnostically difficult cases are rare. The feedback might come late, or not at all.  As a result, Deepika’s interventions try to simulate that experience, with the goal of improving the heuristics that physicians naturally use, even under the great pressure of emergency department service.”

The Pitt/UPMC/CMU faces off against Caltech in round one. Vote now—and from as many devices as you can until Thursday, March 1 at midnight EST.

Learn more about #StatMadness