With a rapidly aging population in the US, innovation in healthcare and wellness is becoming ever more important. The healthcare technology market is rapidly revolutionizing the current healthcare system with a variety of innovative solutions. These “HealthTech” companies (those organizations that use mobile, cloud and other information technology to improve healthcare delivery and develop consumer-centric applications) are driving changes that can improve national health both immediately and in the longer term.
Here are 4 benefits to emerging healthcare technology devices:
- Affordability: Startup Moov has designed some wearable technology that may replace the need for a personal trainer. What sets Moov apart from other wearable fitness devices is that it contains both a gyroscope and magnetometer, allowing it to accurately reconstruct your real-life three-dimensional movements in a digital form. For example, you can strap Moov to your ankle, set it to running mode and select a particular skill level for your workout. Moov senses the G-forces every time you hit the ground and provides real time updates on how fast or slow you should be running to keep up with your selected program. Instead of paying for a costly gym membership and personal trainer fees, Moov acts as both a trainer and motivator for only $80.
- Convenience: Balancing hectic work schedules, family time and physical activity has become more and more difficult for many Americans today. Exercise is not only important for physical well-being, it also improves emotional health. FitnessCube has recently introduced Cubii, an elliptical trainer that fits beneath your desk while at work. Cubii enables you to maintain physical fitness without having to leave your workstation. Who needs an expensive treadmill desk when you can fit this handy piece of exercise equipment almost anywhere?
- Efficiency: Though higher-risk segments of the population are often encouraged to be tested for certain cancers, (e.g. women over the age of 40 are advised to get a mammogram yearly, just as men of the same age are recommended to get an annual prostate exam), these common examinations typically only scan for one type of cancer. In addition, diagnostic tests for cancer can be both expensive and invasive. New startup Miroculus has developed a device that can detect dozens of cancers from a single drop of blood. Miroculus not only enables doctors to scan patients for multiple types of cancer, it also increases the chances of early detection – a key component in successfully treating them. In addition, Miroculus allows physicians to monitor the success rates of particular forms of treatment for disease.
- Information Sharing: The introduction of cloud-based technology has allowed researchers, physicians and patients alike to access a wealth of health and wellness information. VentureBeat recently reported that companies Box and MedXT have recently merged to provide a boost to telemedicine (the diagnosis and treatment of injury and disease via telecommunication tools). Box and MedXT plan to use cloud-based technology to host patient information, so that MRIs, x-rays and lab test results can be sent to a specialist anywhere in the country for review and interpretation.
Not only do emerging HealthTech devices save us time and money, they also have the potential to ensure a higher standard of living and a healthier future for their users, and that’s something everyone can support.