In this manuscript, we discuss relevant socioeconomic factors for developing and implementing sensor analytic point solutions (SNAPS) as point-of-care tools to serve impoverished communities. The distinct economic, environmental, cultural, and ethical paradigms that affect economically disadvantaged users add complexity to the process of technology development and deployment beyond the science and engineering issues. We begin by contextualizing the environmental burden of disease in select low-income regions around the world, including environmental hazards at work, home, and the broader community environment, where SNAPS may be helpful in the prevention and mitigation of human exposure to harmful biological vectors and chemical agents. We offer examples of SNAPS designed for economically disadvantaged users, specifically for supporting decision-making in cases of tuberculosis (TB) infection and mercury exposure. We follow-up by discussing the economic challenges that are involved in the phased implementation of diagnostic tools in low-income markets and describe a micropayment-based systems-as-a-service approach (pay-a-penny-per-use-PAPPU), which may be catalytic for the adoption of low-end, low-margin, low-research, and the development SNAPS. Finally, we provide some insights into the social and ethical considerations for the assimilation of SNAPS to improve health outcomes in marginalized communities.
Keywords: environmental health; pay-a-penny-per-use (PAPPU); poverty; public health; sensor analytic point solutions (SNAPS).