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The health-care tech founder

Behnood Gholami, MASc 05
November 6, 2023
By JP Karwacki, BA 11

A man is smiling and wearing a white collared shirt with grey striped tie.

As CEO of Autonomous Healthcare, Behnood Gholami, MASc 05, is taking artificial intelligence and automation to critical new places, including hospital intensive care units and outer space.

Over the past decade, Gholami has helped develop more than 20 patents for AI-based smart devices that monitor patient health and assist clinicians with lifesaving interventions. He says these next-generation technologies could improve outcomes while allowing medical staff to focus on tasks with a human advantage. 

“With clinician shortages and challenges like burnout, these kinds of technologies can help support fragile systems,” Gholami explains. “Technology can be part of the solution by augmenting health care.” 

Gholami co-founded Autonomous Healthcare with an aerospace engineering professor trained in biomedicine, and has achieved backing from sponsors like the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and the U.S. Army Medical Research. The company also has a contract with NASA to develop a technology that monitors astronauts’ vital signs during space exploration missions.

On the potential of AI

“AI and automation, and having machines as a part of our lives, are absolutely in our future. Automation doesn’t mean replacing but augmenting our abilities to make decisions faster and more efficiently. Those technologies are part of the solution to address a myriad of challenges we face now and in the future.”

Making a difference

“Working on ideas and technologies that previously never existed and building them to have real-world implications is one of the greatest impacts of my work. It’s difficult to do, especially in health care because we’re dealing with human lives, but it’s immensely rewarding as well.”

The Concordia factor

“While studying mechanical engineering, control systems and automation under the supervision of Professor Brandon Gordon, I was introduced to my current world of research, and it set me on the path toward developing AI-enabled technologies. It was a very fulfilling time of my life.”

A recipe for success

“To look at problems with a fresh perspective, you need curiosity, an appetite to learn and the ability to explore beyond the box you’re in.”

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