One of the world’s largest chip makers is helping to instigate a boom in wireless health devices. Qualcomm Life, launched two years ago as a division of the San Diego–based telecommunications giant Qualcomm, is building software and protocols that could bring some order to the chaos of health data. Its first product, called the 2Net Platform, is a system for getting wireless data off those devices and onto the Internet servers of clients, like health device makers or hospitals.
Over the next 18 months the roadmap will guide the activities of the collaboration focusing on two high priority areas:
- Standards Development: DG CONNECT and HHS – through the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) – will develop an action plan to create standards to advance the development and use of internationally recognized standards which support transnational interoperability of electronic health information and communication technology;
- Workforce Development: DG CONNECT and ONC are working to develop and expand a skilled health IT workforce in Europe and the US.
Traditional experimentation based healthcare solutions are constrained by limited data that can confirm or refute the initial hypothesis. Big medical data in individual Electronic Health Records, labs, imaging systems, physician notes, medical correspondence and claims, provides a resource for extracting complementary information that can enhance the data available from traditional approaches based on experimentation.
Datamining algorithms are being used to analyze data to get a more insightful understanding of human health, both preventive and clinical. But despite their sophistication, they are far from flawless.
One way to solve the problem is crowdsourcing citizens connected in a social network, who can provide data, get it analyzed, and consume data for preventive health insights
Several challenges come along with it, for instance: performance, scalability, speed, storage, and power, which we believe could be addressed by cloud-enabled social networks for eHealth services.
Such services could be composed of many other services, for instance, user authentication, email, payroll management, calendars, tele-consultation, e-Prescribing, e-Referral, e-Reimbursement, and alerting services, aiming to change the way big medical data in social networking web sites could be used making it actionable to save lives.
The Three-Tier eHealth Ecosystem on Cloud
Tier 1: Build Sustainable eHealth System
Security and privacy
Reputation/credibility, quality control, and transparency
Tier 2: Crowdsourced Social Networks for eHealth Services
Tier 3: Increasing Access to eHealth
Privacy and data security are in the news a lot lately. As healthcare moves online, it’s understandable that folks increasingly wonder about their health data and what steps are being taken to protect it. Unfortunately there is also increasingly misinformation and confusion out there.
One recent example does not even involve health data, though opponents of the Affordable Care Act hope the confusion continues. In their efforts to prepare for October 1st enrollment, the federal government is setting up a data hub that will query government databases in order to provide real-time eligibility information for insurance applicants using the Affordable Care Act’s online exchanges. Certain members of Congress caused an uproar recently by questioning the security of this data hub. Their efforts to derail the ACA are further fueled by misleading reports that describe the hub as a massive database of sensitive health and financial information without proper security safeguards.
However, astute observers have noted, there will be no health data stored in the hub. More importantly, the data hub will not actually store any personal data at all, but instead will route it temporarily from existing secure government databases in order to determine eligibility for Medicaid and private health insurance subsidies. While some important questions have yet to be answered, CMS has reiterated the privacy and security safeguards will be paramount once the hub is operational. These details receive little to no press, while countless editorials and blogs have fretted about a massive government database and its potential security risks.
The confusion surrounding this relatively simple and important IT strategy for the ACA is emblematic of broader misunderstandings about health data security and privacy. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, contains strong provisions to safeguard and protect sensitive health information. However, in the course of doing so, this law and its associated regulations have together managed to confuse and scare patients, advocates and providers alike, often preventing them from using eHealth tools to communicate.
The wearable technology trend is beginning to take off and two big health organizations want to make sure that they’re not left behind. This week, health technology company Qualcomm Life and California health system Palomar Health announced the creation of an incubator for exploring the applications of wearable computing in medicine.
Called Glassomics, the joint program, first reported by MedCityNews, will look at both clinical and consumer applications of health-related wearable technology. Although the name is clearly a nod to Google Glass, it sounds like the incubator won’t limit itself to Google devices.
In a statement, the companies said Glassomics is intended to encourage industry partnerships in research and development efforts and would encompass a range of uses, from patient data monitoring to augmented reality-enhanced clinical applications to genomic information mapping and visualization. The incubator will be housed at Palomar and will make use of Qualcomm Life’s 2net platform, which is the company’s universally-interoperable network for collecting and sharing biometric data from connected health devices.
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In the US, 70 percent of residents over age 65 will need long-term care in their lifetimes. The good news is that eHealth can help in monitoring health conditions. The bad news is that home-based-care staffing and turnover issues jeopardize the care these patients need—things such as help bathing, dressing, eating, using the bathroom.
What is person-centred eHealth?
Does the wording imply that ehealth in general is not person-centred. Well. To elaborate these questions further, I need to make some assumption and define what I mean by person-centred care and eHealth.
Ehealth is according to Eysenbach et al (2001) ” an emerging field in the intersection of medical informatics, public health and business, referring to health services and information delivered or enhanced through the Internet and related technologies. In a broader sense, the term characterizes not only a technical development, but also a state-of-mind, a way of thinking, an attitude, and a commitment for networked, global thinking, to improve health care locally, regionally, and worldwide by using information and communication technology”.
EHealth is not a technical solutions per se, it is also a state of mind and attitude about how we want to communicate and in that sense it could be a good tool in providing support for PCC.
The core in my exposition is grounded on the definition of PCC found within GPCC. I have already discussed this in my previous blogs, and will for the matter of simplicity call it gPCC (Gothenburg person-centred care approach). The most central aspect in gPCC is the mutual acceptance that a person always is intradependent of the other person. At the core of the definition is the concept of partnership.
The juridical meaning of the word is that two persons reach an written or verbal agreement (contract) to perform certain commitments. Within the gPCC approach, this agreement would be manifested by a health and care plan that is agreed upon by all involved stakeholders. So partnership needs at least two people that agree upon a certain approach in order to reach a certain outcomes.
Qualcomm Life Inc a subsidiary of Qualcomm Technologies showcased their wireless healthcare services business in Europe at the International Telecare & Telehealth Conference held in Birmingham England. Mobile health holds significant potential in Europe to defray healthcare costs and increase the quality and quantity of care. This will help to address anticipated shortages of qualified healthcare professionals.
Qualcomm Life’s 2net™ Platform and Hub are designed to enable medical device manufacturers and service providers to wirelessly connect their medical devices via a secure cloud-based solution. This enables biometric information to be easily accessible by device users, their healthcare providers, and caregivers. The technology makes biometric information easily accessible by device users, healthcare providers, and caregivers.
Two of Qualcomm Life’s first European customers are Telbios and Cystelcom. Telbios is a leading service provider of remote health monitoring solutions for chronic care and disease management in Italy. By connecting to the 2net Platform, Telbios will be able to combine data from several devices into one data stream to allow for improved access and sharing of patient data. Cystelcom a Spanish engineering software company has developed their mHealth Alert remote monitoring system to help patients dealing with chronic diseases.
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Introducing the Qualcomm Tricorder X PRIZE.
A $10 million competition to bring healthcare to the palm of your hand.
Imagine a portable, wireless device in the palm of your hand that monitors and diagnoses your health conditions. That’s the technology envisioned by this competition, and it will allow unprecedented access to personal health metrics. The end result: Radical innovation in healthcare that will give individuals far greater choices in when, where, and how they receive care.
As the third annual mHealth Summit convenes today near Washington, D.C., San Diego-based Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) says it has formed a new subsidiary, Qualcomm Life, from its wireless health business unit. The wireless technology giant says it also has established a $100 million wireless health investment fund that will be managed by Qualcomm Ventures.
Qualcomm Life is headed by Rick Valencia, a former CEO at San Diego-based ProfitLine who joined Qualcomm a little over a year ago. Valencia previously helped to launch ProfitLine’s multi-billion dollar telecommunications management services business. Qualcomm’s wireless health guru, Don Jones, continues in a similar role at Qualcomm Life as vice president of global strategy and market development.
As part of today’s announcement, Qualcomm also unveiled the 2net Platform and Hub, and a video explaining the technology is available here.
The 2net Hub is a product that plugs into a standard electric outlet—it resembles a simple wireless router—and serves as a gateway to the 2net Platform, which operates as a technology-agnostic, cloud-based service. The platform serves as a kind of universal translator and intermediary that addresses one of the intractable challenges amid the convergence of different wireless health devices, technologies, standards, and systems. Data from the 2net Hub, a user’s mobile phone, or other gateways, is sent to the 2net Platform, where it is encrypted and made available in the cloud to patients, physicians, and other appropriate users. Qualcomm says the system meets medical privacy requirements and works with multiple carriers.