More and more, direct-to-consumer wearables companies are moving into business-to-business healthcare markets. It's not exactly a surprising move -- the potential for consumer technology to encourage healthier lifestyle choices is a core thesis of digital health, and one that could have big implications for healthcare as it faces a rise in chronic conditions. Nonetheless, over the course of the past year MobiHealthNews has noticed a creeping trend of the big names in consumer-facing digital health putting more resources behind their B2B programs.
Take Fitbit itself, for example. In the company's first quarter earnings call, CEO James Park wasn't shy about trumpeting the healthcare opportunity, stopping just shy of promising a regulated device.
As mobile health technology has proliferated, federal regulatory authorities have taken notice. In particular, over the last five years the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been honing its approach to mobile apps and has released a series of documents that provide helpful guidelines to developers of healthtech apps. In particular, the FDA sorts mobile apps into three buckets:apps that are not “medical devices,” and so are not subject to the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act);apps that are medical devices, ostensibly subject to the FD&C Act, but that pose a low enough risk to the public that the FDA has determined not to enforce the FD&C Act with respect to them; andapps that are medical devices, subject to the FD&C Act, and over which the FDA intends to apply its regulatory authority.
Patients afflicted with chronic pain might wish for another body but it turns out that sitting next to an image of their own body could do the job.
A virtual reality “out of body” illusion affords more temporary relief than powerful painkillers, a study suggests, with patients finding that their pain diminished by more than a third.
About one in ten adults in Britain is thought to suffer from some form of chronic pain, although the phenomenon is only partially understood.
Over the past decade experiments have suggested that the symptoms have as much to do with the mind as with any problem in the body, leading researchers and virtual reality companies to test immersive computer games and other distractions as possible treatments.
In our line of work we see countless value propositions that digital health companies strive to (or claim to) deliver.
Maybe we’ve had one too many summertime margaritas, but lately this value proposition barrage has got us thinking: It seems that there is something missing in the digital health value chain.
Clinically and commercially validated digital health interventions are supposed to be paving the way towards success and bringing return on investment to the health stakeholder. This is what we’re all trying to do, right? The question is though: what exactly is the ROI that digital health promises to bring?
With investments in the digital health marketplace accelerating at a rapid pace, Astellas Pharma Inc. and DigiTx Partners LLC have announced that Astellas has launched DigiTx Partners, a digital health investment company in partnership with MPM Capital, Inc.
DigiTx Partners will invest in the digital health space broadly, with a special focus on companies which create solutions that improve patient outcomes and provide substantial synergy with a broader pharma business. Although the emphasis will be on earlier stage companies, investments will be made in both start-ups and growth stage companies.
At this year’s recent annual Institute and Expo of the America’s Health Insurance Plans, three central themes emerged from its sessions: digital health impacts, consumer engagement trends, and business and care transformation.Here’s a closer look at what each theme means from an industry perspective, the overall messages that were delivered on each theme throughout the conference, as well some potential challenges ahead that the industry should anticipate.
“Don’t ever forget that you’re weird.”Not exactly what I expected to hear, years ago, on the first day of my first business school marketing class. This advice is a good reminder that designing for oneself, while straightforward and enticing, will not have widespread impact.When it comes to healthcare and wellness, the population of people needing support is quite diverse. Not everyone has adequate health insurance, access to specialists, disposable income for a gym membership, education about proper nutrition, a reliable personal support system or convenient internet access to receive messages from providers.
Apple's ResearchKit was quickly adopted by clinical studies at a series of universities and hospitals, but a new iOS app focused on rheumatoid arthritis from pharmaceutical firm GlaxoSmithKline marks the first time a drug company has made use of the framework.
Innovation is inspiring. It’s what drives the evolution of technology. Take digital health, for example: billions of investment dollars have poured into the space in support of technologies slated to transform healthcare delivery. But fresh ink on a blueprint and enthusiasm only gets you so far, and surprisingly, investment dollars may not take you much further.According to a 2014 Accenture study, more than half of all digital health startups are expected to fail within the first two years, a surprising finding considering last year’s venture funding topped off at $4.5 billion. Turns out, building technology that inspires financial backing is only half the battle—the real fight is carving out a space in the market where you belong.
hen you think about “digital health apps,” you probably envision a millennial guy pitching his new app aimed at other millennials to a bunch of old dudes at a venture capital firm. But that’s not what I see. I see innovators helping to patch up an expensive-yet-hole-ridden social safety net.
Despite spending trillions, the federal government still can’t figure out how to make sure Americans can afford their healthcare. Millions of Americans either can’t afford insurance, or still can’t afford basic care despite paying for insurance. Obamacare outlawed basic plans, while forcing more Americans to buy insurance or pay fines. The result was entirely predictable. Health insurance is even more expensive now than it was before the law.
Not only do Medicaid and Medicare provide inadequate care, but they have also set up perverse incentives which further diminish quality of care and increase costs for all patients
So while the US government dithers and then makes th
This year, a German businesswoman arrived in Washington DC and promptly developed a painful sinus infection. She searched online and found a local doctor, Suzanne Doud Galli. But instead of ordering a taxi to visit Dr Galli’s office, the patient arranged a virtual consultation via her smartphone from the comfort of her hotel room, with the help of an app called HealthTap.The app’s algorithm matched the patient’s symptoms with Dr Galli’s expertise. Dr Galli prescribed medicine and sent the prescription electronically to a pharmacy near the patient’s hotel — all in about 10 minutes.
Accenture identified five forces that would likely have an impact on the healthcare industry now. These forces, which it said will converge in three to five years, include: intelligent automation; the liquid workforce; the platform economy; predictable disruption; and digital trust. Kaveh Safavi, M.D., J.D., senior managing director of Accenture’s health practice, said with these five forces, the health industry will increasingly tap digital technologies to augment human labor, personalize care and free up time to focus on where they are needed most.“The outcome of a people-first, digital health strategy is that it liberates the healthcare workforce to focus on more meaningful work that requires judgment and personal interaction,” he said.According to the industry report, "Accenture Digital Health Technology Vision 2016, the health industry will increasingly embrace intelligent automation—powered by artificial intelligence (AI), robotics and augmented reality – to streamline basic tasks, such as collecting patient intake data, enabling clinicians to focus where their training and experience have the greatest value.
Apple's ambitions in the health sector continue to expand, with its digital health team making its first known acquisition—personal health data startup Gliimpse, Fast Company has learned.Silicon Valley-based Gliimpse has built a personal health data platform that enables any American to collect, personalize, and share a picture of their health data. The company was started in 2013 by Anil Sethi and Karthik Hariharan. Sethi is a serial entrepreneur who has spent the past decade working with health startups, after taking his company Sequoia Software public in 2000. He got his start as a systems engineer at Apple in the late 1980s.
It’s 2021. There has been a steady trickle of stories about what happens to people’s health data. There’s no concrete evidence of harm in any of these stories, but a crisis of confidence has built up over time. One hospital has been the subject of a cyberattack, but it is not yet clear whether sensitive data has been stolen and deciphered.Controversy about the use of health data is nothing new. Five years earlier in 2016, 2.2% of patients had exercised their right to opt out of data being shared beyond the NHS information centre after a botched attempt to link up information from patients’ GP records and hospital activity records.
In a report published today the charity said that technology delivered via smartphones, including ‘smart inhalers’, apps that help individuals avoid triggers and remote monitoring, would revoluntionise asthma care and ease pressure on the NHS.The report, Connected asthma: how technology will transform care, said immediate action should be taken to ensure every person with asthma has an action plan available to them digitally. These action plans should eventually be incorporated into shared patient records.
The Apple rumor mill is rolling again, this time with reports of a new forthcoming health device. According to Apple Insider, via Taiwanese paper Economic Daily News, the new product, two years in the making, will "accurately collect users' personal daily life including heart rate, pulse, blood sugar changes and other information." It's supposedly set for a 2016 launch.
Details about the form of this new device were hazy -- it could be a new wearable, a handheld device, or perhaps a strap or set of straps for the Apple Watch that expand the device's existing health-sensing capabilities.
The Olympics aren't just for athletes. It's also an opportunity for sports tech companies – including makers of vitals-monitoring wearables, fitness and training apps, and other digital tools – to show off their technology on an international stage. In Rio, athletes are looking for every edge to compete, and that includes the latest gadgets.
Samsung offered gifts to every athelete and included a little bit of digital health flair. As reported by Engadget, Samsung gifted 12,500 Olympic athletes with a special edition Galaxy S7 Edge phone. In addition to an Olympics-inspired design and a built-in Rio Olympics app, the phones came with Samsung's Gear IconX heartrate-tracking earbuds, which can send data to Samsung's S Health app.
There has been an explosion of digital health startups in recent years. The market is expected to reach $233.3 billion by 2020, with the primary driver coming from the mobile health market.Companies are springing up to offer solutions for the escalating costs of health care, wellness, physician shortages and the need for improved prevention and management of expensive chronic conditions.
Healthcare has been understandably late to the widespread adoption of digital technology. Extremely restrictive regulations, the presence of multiple key stakeholders, a slow-to-adopt culture and other challenges distinguish healthcare from the retail and finance sectors, which have flourished with their implementations of digital technologies. But pharmaceutical companies (pharma) inhabit a unique position, situated between patients, prescribers and payers, allowing them to gain maximum benefits from a wide array of digital offerings.
Digital health executives and professors testified about the ways they think federal regulation needs to change to create a robust digital health industry while still protecting the safety and wellbeing of patients.The conversation spanned various regulatory bodies and federal programs including HIPAA, the FDA, FTC and Medicare.“The regulatory framework for most of these apps is complicated and in some cases troubling,” Nicolas Terry, a law professor at Indiana University said in his prepared testimony. “The oversimplified binary of regulation versus innovation is a poor frame. Rather, we have a current technological space that is subject to both over-regulation and under-regulation.”
A panel discussion on the future of digital health in pharma at the MedCity CONVERGE conference in Philadelphia this week highlighted how Pfizer, Eli Lilly and Roche are using telemedicine, mobile health and connected devices as part of their drug development strategy. They also called attention to the impact of compliance on implementing these technologies.
Chad mobile from UnicefThe expanding role of healthcare providers is not limited to societies with “developed” healthcare systems. Diseases, such as AIDS and malaria, prevalent in the third world and emerging countries are now considered chronic or curable with the proper treatment, leaving those afflicted with greater chance of recovery. However, as the cost the typical person pays for healthcare over his or her lifetime rises, the question becomes: How will these emerging societies, especially those in less-developed countries, sustain a rising bill?The answer is they cannot. Hopefully, they will not have to. Already, healthcare technology providers around the globe are finding new ways to reduce the overall cost of medicine by improving efficiencies wherever possible. They are accomplishing this in a few key ways:
Three mHealth companies enrolled in the LA-based health system's recent accelerator are now launching new programs targeting post-acute care, VR therapy and online registration.Cedars-Sinai has launched partnerships with three mHealth companies, all graduates of the health system’s recent Techstars Healthcare Accelerator.The Los Angeles-based health system is launching programs to help patients access post-acute care at home, take part in virtual reality-based therapeutic services and use an online platform to price and select sports medicine services.
The world is on the verge of a fourth industrial revolution, characterized by artificial intelligence, robots, big data, and deep learning and analytics, but medicine is still stuck at the beginning of the third industrial revolution, which has already brought digital capabilities to billions of people worldwide.That’s the contention of Eric Topol, MD, director of the Scripps Translational Science Institute and chief academic officer of Scripps Health in La Jolla, Calif., who says that the digital revolution has been occurring since the middle of the last century. Even so, the healthcare industry continues to only minimally leverage information technology.
Telling sleep apnea patients they need to use a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine is kind of like telling smokers they need to quit. They know it’s good for their health, but it’s hard to change.
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