I just heard the news that the first fully digital (entirely paperless) hospital will open in Abu Dhabi in 2015. The clinic worked with experts from the famous Cleveland Clinic, the No. 4 ranked best hospital in the United States. This might be a good step towards changing the hospital experience not only for professionals working there but more importantly for patients to make it a place where they go to re-energize themselves.
“The fact that a unified medical record is going to exist will provide seamless communication, which means there is an opportunity for us to communicate back and forth with the main campus and elsewhere in the healthcare system, without having the patient have the responsibility of carrying paper,” Harrison was quoted in the article as saying.
The 13-storey LEED Gold-Certified facility in Al Maryah Island will have five Centers of Excellence: Heart & Vascular Institute, Digestive Disease Institute, Eye Institute, Neurological Institute, and Respiratory & Critical Care Institute, according to anEmirates 24/7 article. It will have 364 beds, five clinical floors, three treatment and diagnostic levels, 26 operating rooms, and 13 floors of acute and critical care units.
Researchers at Nottingham Trent University are working on new kind of car seats that could measure vital signs such as ECG of the driver to prevent accidents caused by drivers falling asleep.
The sensor system can be used to detect heart signals which indicate a driver is beginning to lose alertness, and trigger a warning to pull over. Should the driver choose to ignore the alerts, active cruise control or lane departure technology could be deployed to gently guide the vehicle. The information could also be sent over a wireless network to a control centre to take further action.
This shows the path for new wearable health trackers which would play an immense role in our lives seamlessly measuring key vital signs and actually saving our lives from time to time.
Read more about the research here.
Without managing our health while being healthy it is impossible to significantly improve healthcare. I’ve already introduced the health trackers I have been using to stay healthy as an attempt of persuading people to do so.
Now Withings has come up with the report of a recent survey that had some worrying results.
- Although 82% of Americans think tracking vital signs at home is important, one fifth of Americans do not track any vitals outside of the doctor’s office.
- 75% of people would be open to checking their vitals at home if they were a part of a program that would save them money on health insurance premiums
- Oddly enough, although 59% of respondents monitor their temperature with a thermometer, only 12% could recall it as a vital sign, unprompted.
- Over 80% of patients recall their doctors taking body temperature, blood pressure, and heart rate. Only 29% remember blood oxygen level being measured at their last check-up.
Obviously, better wearable gadgets are needed which make the whole process comfortable, simple and smooth.
Do you track any health parameters? If so, which ones? If not, why not?
Update: Also, here is the infographic Withings has released (click on the image for the original one):
A few months ago I discussed the future features of smart contact lenses. Now using these to augment vision or track health parameters is not only a good idea any more, as Google launched a partnership with the pharmaceutical company Novartis to develop smart contact lenses that can track diabetes by measuring blood glucose levels in tears and fix farsightedness as well.
As part of the agreement, Google[x] and Novartis’ eye care division Alcon will create smart lenses that feature “non-invasive sensors, microchips and other miniaturized electronics” and focus on two main areas. The first will provide a way for diabetic patients to keep on top of their glucose levels by measuring the sugar levels in their tear fluid, feeding the data back to a smartphone or tablet. The second solution aims to help restore the eye’s natural focus on near objects, restoring clear vision to those who are only farsighted (presbyopia).
Have you found it hard to change lifestyle? Do you struggle going to the gym or waking up early? This wearable health tracker wristband called Pavlok will literally electrocute you into action. Would you use it? The founder explained how it works:
Sethi explains how Pavlok works with a simple example — the habit of waking earlier. “It sits on my wrist and at 6am it’ll vibrate. I can snooze it, but if I snooze it twice, it shocks me.”
Well, I’m ready to take actions in my life without such hardcore motivation tools. But there are certainly people who need some push to make the next step. This is sort of a push.
I’ve been featuring the wearable health trackers I use on a daily basis and I was glad to see and amazingly detailed analysis of all these biosensing wearables on the website of Rock Health. The number of trackers has been rising for the past months faster than ever before, therefore the real challenge is to choose which one to use for what purpose. The ultimate goal is to track meaningful health parameters constanly without feeling the disadvantages of wearing a device no matter how small or smart it is.
It’s a crowded market, but there’s a growing tail of opportunity for biosensing wearables. We’re also pretty confident this space will continue to develop as tech giants like Apple, Samsung, and Googlestart playing in the sandbox.
By the way, you can browse among these trackers in the database of Amazon.com.
Last year, the healthcare innovation world cup was won by AdhereTech that developed a drug box that changes its color when the next medication should be taken. Now here is Kaleo’s talking drug box that can provide spoken instructions to patients about how to administer an injection.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, more people die each year from drug overdoses than car accidents – and 70 percent of those deaths are caused by legally prescribed medication. Kaleo, a pharmaceutical firm, hopes it can change that. It’s creating a device called Evzio, a small, easy to use drug delivery system that can safely administer a life-saving dose of naloxone.
Many patients are afraid of needles, and the process of properly filling and using a syringe isn’t exactly user friendly. That’s why Kaleo equipped its device with not only clearly written instructions, but a voice: Evzio verbally tells users how to use it properly.
The company’s study concluded that 90% of patients could perform the task even though they have never done it before.
In this edition of my series about wearable health trackers that I use, I have already described Tinké, AliveCor and Withings. Now let me share my experience with the Pebble smartwatch. This smartwatch got famous by being successfully crowdfunded on Kickstarter. Mine was shipped this April and since then, I still haven’t been able to discover all its functionalities and the possibilities it provides. The reason behind that is the app store of Pebble full of great applications. Due to its own system, developers can create applications specifically designed for the Pebble.
This way, I have these apps right now:
- I can control music on my smartphone from the Pebble.
- I get notifications about e-mails, phone calls or text messages (I don’t have to keep my phone in front of me during meetings any more).
- Pedometer measuring the number of steps I take.
- Morpheuz is waking me up at the best time.
- 7-min workout guides me to a healthy morning exercise.
- Compass (never know when it comes handy).
Its success truly depends on how rich the community of apps can become soon.
Among negative examples, I could mention that its screen is black and white; only a few apps can be added to the watch, although the battery life is amazingly long.
After weeks of rumors about Apple launching a health initiative then getting much less than expected, now Google is said to launch a new health tracking platform called Google Fit.
Not to be left behind by Apple, Google could soon launch its own health-tracking platform for mobile devices. Forbes reports that the search giant is working on a new service, tentatively called Google Fit, which will pull in data from third-party fitness wearables and health apps and combine them into one central app. It’s not known if Fit will be delivered as a standalone app or come embedded inside future versions of Android, but it would likely operate as Google-made version of Apple’s HealthKit, a service that lets companies like Nike feed in fitness data, and Samsung’s own fitness framework, SAMI.