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From old blog: Relevant to our ecosystem and some due diligence

posted Feb 9, 2013, 7:41 PM by Dmitri Boulanov
Some relevant thoughts I've been meaning to post.

1) A NYTimes article about the use of apps by hospitals and providers - helps to get some context - current situations and limitations / concerns raised about the use of software by today's doctors to perform certain job responsibilities.Something to keep in mind that stood out:

"... And it has created something of a generational divide. Older doctors admire, even envy, their young colleagues’ ease with new technology. But they worry that the human connections that lie at the core of medical practice are at risk of being lost..."

Another article in the times is very relevant to what we're doing - I hope we can be included in such a post in a few months or couple of years:
"Apps That Can Alert The Doctor When Trouble Looms". Quote of interest:

"...The novel approach relies on technology that is increasingly standard on smartphones: global positioning systems and accelerometers that can track location and movement. “It’s a potential human early-warning system, the body’s check-engine light,” said Michael Seid, a professor of pediatrics at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Since last year, 15 patients with chronic gastrointestinal trouble have carried the phones to test the software’s effectiveness. The results so far indicate that some patients clearly change their communication and movement patterns in the days before the onset of severe symptoms. “When your pain increases, you’re less likely to be at the park or the mall. It could be early indicators of a flare-up or worsening of the disease,” Dr. Seid said. The technology, he added, “measures social behavior at a scale and depth you just didn’t have before.”..."

Finally, "Boosting Healthcare IT's IQ", from Wired:

    "...Cloud-based machine-learning can be applied to the resulting cloud-based dataset, creating medical advice systems that may actually help doctors instead of just annoying them..."

2) A note worth highlighting in the Wiki article on Remote Patient Monitoring, highlighting the technology's limitations and costs:

"...RPM is highly dependent on the individual’s motivation to manage their health. Without the patient’s willingness to be an active participant in their care, RPM implementation will likely fail. Cost is also a barrier to its widespread use. Devices and peripherals currently cost thousands of dollars, and for RPM to take hold in health care, costs need to come down to the $300 to $500 range.[12] There is a lack of reimbursement guidelines for RPM services, which may deter its incorporation into clinical practice.[5]. The shift of accountability associated with RPM brings up liability issues[5]. There are no clear guidelines in respect to whether clinicians have to intervene every time they receive an alert regardless of the urgency. The continuous flow of patient data requires a dedicated team of health care providers to handle the information, which may, in fact, increase the workload..."


3) Some Boston-based companies worth checking out and understanding that are doing similar things in our ecosystem, but in the end are taking a different approach. This is cool, because the existence of multiple companies with a similar approach only validates our concept and makes us more confident in the direction we're taking as engineers and aspiring health-IT entrepreneurs. Please email me (Dmitri) or Amr [at] eumetrica.com to find out how we're different from the following and aim to revolutionize healthcare delivery with our approach and system.

Ginger.io - recent RockHealth graduate
Healthrageous - Boston-based - founded in 2010
iQuartic - recent HealthBox 2012 graduate
Cogito - coming out of MIT Media Lab

4) In our search for existing sensors that our system could use to process data into information (hopefully streaming) and deliver it to care providers, we have taken a note of a number of existing ones. Some that stand out are listed here:

Fitness Devices reviews
iRhythm - disposable EKG patch

Proteus - electronic pill
- for adherence