Everywhere Imagery Care with Handheld and Open


The EIT Health EICHO project supports development of EchOpen, an affordable ultrasound device that plugs into an ordinary smartphone, providing medical professionals universal access to diagnostic imaging. Built in full open source by an international community of almost 500 people, this probe will become the stethoscope of our modern times.



Wider use of ultrasound will improve diagnosis and therefore medical treatment. EchOpen was born in late 2014 as a community project, involving people from all over the world who are interested in m-health and e-health devices for the future of medicine. The project works closely with physicians who have developed and fostered the concept of echostethoscopy for 30 years. In 2015 the community reached 200 members, and in February 2016 we made our very first prototype kit.


EchOpen is an open and collaborative project, led by a multidisciplinary community of experts and senior professionals joined by makers and Fablabs members. The lead partner is Assistance Publique Hôpitaux de Paris, but it is also supported by: Sanofi-Aventis Group, Altran, Sorbonne Université, Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) and IMEC – Interuniversitair Micro-Electronica Centrum.

The project

Echostethoscopy is defined as the use of a universal ultra-portable ultrasound imaging or medical visualisation tool, which is intended to enhance the diagnostic capabilities of health professionals in clinical practice. The ultrasound technology we have developed involves a portable device that attaches to a smartphone and is primarily aimed at physicians who have never taken ultrasound images. Doctors should be able to use the technology after a 48-hour training programme to master the gesture and the concept.

The project is support by a wide academic ecosystem, including APHP, many research centers, universities, institutional foundations, and a large multidisciplinary open community. In September 2017, this network deployed a functional prototype of the first Open Source medical quality ultrasound image.

EchOpen is now heading for industrialisation. For the next three years, the aim of the project is to design and build an affordable echostethoscope and bring it to the market, with all proper regulatory files approved and a business model implemented. EIT Health funding from 2019-2020 is intended to cover two out of eight work packages that are planned for future development.


The echOpen initiative allows radical transformation of clinics by enabling universal access diagnosis in hospitals, community medicine and medically underserved areas worldwide. By improving the diagnostic abilities of all medical healthcare professionals, it has a positive impact on the work routines of general practitioners, emergency physicians, specialists, midwives and nurses. More frequent and affordable diagnostic imaging also benefits patients and payers.

Why this is an EIT Health project

The open-source nature of this project is an excellent example of the collaborative innovation that the EIT Health Partnership is designed to encourage. This project is in keeping with the EIT Health Focus Area of improving Care Pathways, because it provides an innovative care and health delivery solution. It is also in keeping with the Focus Area of Bringing Care Home, because it allows for home diagnosis.

External partners

  • echOpen
  • Institut Pasteur
  • Université de Tours
  • Université Libre de Bruxelles

This ultrasound lens enables doctors and medical practitioners to immediately explore patients’ bodies during clinical examination.

A Elezi and al. forthcoming 2018

Mehdi Benchoufi
| MD | Assistance Publique Hôpitaux de Paris