April 12, 2014Published by: Drew Benvie

The role of digital in the future of health

MarketWatch has published a new report on the future of health. The free to download paper covers topics ranging from digital gaming, self-tracking and diet logging, to assisted online diagnosis and connected care.

As brands and consumers alike begin to experiment with what's possible with mobile and wearable health technologies, it's handy to see a collection of predictions all in one place. Boehringer Ingleheim has partnered with PSFK to get this report published for free. It's available to view below in full.

Consumers today are more demanding than ever before. Not only do they want to be in control, they want options tailored specifically to their needs. And in most arenas they get what they want: their shoes, fitness regimes, banking solutions and even their burgers are made just for them. But the health industry has lagged, until now.

Thanks to a focus on personalized data, real-time information and blockchain technology; healthcare is finally getting a reboot. And the implications are significant. Not only is it better for patient outcomes, it democratizes health and creates greater efficiencies and scalability. Here are some of the trends we can expect to see.

You're in control now

Made Just For You

Bowhead Health, named after the longest living mammal (the Bowhead whale), is a healthcare startup on a mission to remove the pain points and inefficiencies of health management. They believe that when you empower patients to manage their own health, health outcomes improve. Their device, smaller than a food processor, is capable of reading your biometric data in real-time. Through a blood-prick test or saliva, users submit a small sample into the machine. This then gets sent to doctors who can instantly detect any key deficiencies. Based on this data, the machine dispenses a vitamin-based pill, just for you.

Anything made specifically for you is likely to increase adherence and thus help prevent problems arising in the future. And as most medical scholars will agree, preventative medicine is more effective than treating a problem. In another example, Habit is a food-tech business that uses biometric testing to recommend personalized eating plans and then sends the meals to your door.  The business is based on a similar insight: personalization heightens compliance and betters health outcomes.

Blockchain Powered, Data Secured

Blockchain technology powers Bowhead Health, Pokitdok, MedRec, Gem and is the technology of choice for most new healthcare startups. The real benefit of this technology is that no data is ever lost. Your health records are secured on a ledger, that you, the patient, gets to control. You can share the data as needed, and know it will never be hacked and the data will be kept even if you move countries, or switch doctors.

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