The 'M' Powered Patient
Mobile technology is creating more powerful and positive disruptions in the world of healthcare than we have ever seen. It is without doubt one of the most transformative trends in recent years, shaking up an industry that has traditionally been conservative.
Almost universal access to the internet, social media channels, smart phones and tablets, coupled with a host of technological innovations in the areas of self-monitoring, crowd-sourcing and online communities, allow for a degree of knowledge, empowerment and motivation that is driving the phenomenon of the ‘M’ Powered Patient.
Four key digital trends are at the crux of these changes: Smart Health (prediction); ‘My’ Health (personalisation); Shared Health (participation) and Engaged Health (gamification).
Smart Health (prediction)
Within this sector, we are seeing the rise of predictive smart phone accessories and bio sensors that provide portable ways to diagnose a wide range of diseases.
Ford is convinced that this type of medical monitoring is the next key to growing car sales. Besides checking blood-sugar, Ford has developed a car seat
to check the driver’s heart rate that could warn of an impending heart attack.
Predictive technologies are particularly game-changing in third world countries where plug-in smart phone accessories
can be used to detect life-threatening conditions such as E.coli and hepatitis.
What is significant is the patient-centricity of this mobile delivery model. Smart Health is coming of age as an effective measure that can harness new, affordable technology with the potential to deliver convenient, effective care to patients.
‘My’ Health (personalisation)
The ‘Quantified Self’
movement was founded in the USA and is rapidly spreading worldwide. 500 million mobile users, or about 30% of an estimated 1.4 billion smart phone subscribers worldwide, will be using health/fitness apps – such as Nike Fuel Band
- by 2015. This sector alone will grow from 154 million downloads in 2010 to 908 million by 2016.
At the heart of this movement lies a very simple idea: metrics make us better. Self knowledge is power. The real strength in these quantified self devices is their ability to make positive behaviour change in an individual.
Over the next decade, the ability to simulate future health states will improve dramatically through the growth in genetic and other health screenings, advances in understanding the relationships between lifestyle and health states, and the drive toward massive data analysis and access. In addition, visualisation tools—through the tiny screens on mobile phones —will improve the ability to communicate complex simulations in tangible ways to directly impact health choices.
These tools will offer new ways for individuals to take control of their health, opportunities for businesses to create innovative models and new practices for health practitioners to help motivate patients.
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