Disruptive Forces in Healthcare
Last week, I participated on a panel to discuss “Disruptive Forces in Healthcare: Where Are They Leading Us?” at the DIA conference in Washington D.C.
On a personal note, it was fantastic to finally meet Jack Andraka, who provided his point of view as a Visionary Teenage Scientist for the panel. Jack, as you may know, invented an early diagnostic test for pancreatic cancer when he was 15. He just graduated from high school and is headed to Stanford in the fall.
I was asked to provide my point of view as a Trends Analyst, specifically addressing Wearable Technology. I find people are still struggling to understand whether or not wearables are just a fad, and what does the “Internet of Things” mean exactly?
My approach to trends is less about looking into a crystal ball, and more about seeing through a wide-angle lens. Although there is a lot to talk about, I limited my 5-minute presentation to 5 big ideas for wearables as part of our connected future. You can’t look at wearables in isolation. Everything will be connected. Wearables are more than just smartwatches and activity trackers, they also include smart-sensing fabrics. Sensors are already being integrated in more ways than you can imagine.
We now have hearables, nearables, touchables, stickables, ingestibles, and implantables.
Convergence of Health and Tech
Healthcare innovation is being driven by the convergence of health and tech, and there is more influence from players outside the industry, like Apple and Google, and a record number of startups.
Ideas are coming from everywhere to cross-pollinate health.
From digital natives to boomers, consumers are taking charge of their own health. Health is shifting to wellness and prevention, and you can find many stories about behavior change shared through social media. Digital natives expect health to work like the rest of their technology and mobile experiences. They want real-time solutions, and if they can’t find them, they are going to build them.
Real-time data that is continuous and contextual, not episodic, is revolutionizing clinical trials and minimizing hospital stays through remote home monitoring. In addition to tracking our bodies, we have also started to track our environment and air quality in the home and in our cities.
Smarter Sensing Cities
— Stuart Rock (@stuart_rock) June 18, 2015
Also last week, Bloomberg hosted a technology conference in London on “Smarter Cities.” I was excited to see a panel dedicated to healthcare, including Jessica Federer, Chief Digital Officer for Bayer.
— Jessica Federer (@jjfeds) June 18, 2015
Today, I hope to get more healthcare people thinking about the environment. I had been collecting stories on cities using smart technology, and some examples on the leading edge include Barcelona, Madrid, Amsterdam, Chicago and Singapore.
What are your ideas for how healthcare organizations can improve quality of life in their communities through smarter cities?
Real innovation comes from doing new things in new ways, not old things in new ways.
You Too Can Track the Environment
IBM is putting its technology to work to give government leaders data on the environment in their communities. But citizens and organizations can now start collecting and sharing some of the same environmental data like air quality and noise levels through the Smart Citizen Project utilizing Arduino technology. One project of particular interest was the “Dynamic Noise and Pollution Campus Map Project at the University of Glasgow.”
It is important that both students and staff are aware of the air quality and levels of noise around the university campus in order to allow them to know where the most appropriate places to walk and study are. Building a dynamic map of the campus that can aggregate information about air pollution (in PPM, parts per million) and noise (decibels) while at the same time educating users what the normal values for these variables (noise and NO2/CO2, the main air pollutants) are is a good solution to this task. The features that the startup kit provides make it a very suitable product for this project’s needs. – Campus Map Project, University of Glasgow (View Video.)
With CO2 levels at their highest rates ever, projects like the Campus Map can build awareness about the quality of our immediate environment. Can hospitals benefit from a similar project? Maybe we’ll see more people coming up with new ways to do new things.
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