Posts Tagged ‘health technology’



Congratulations to Withings!

January 22nd, 2016
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Congratulations to our client, Withings, for being honored with the 2016 CES Innovation Awards in two categories, as well as being given the ‘Best of CES’ Awards from many major publications. Withings hit the press jackpot with their two latest innovations:
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Why the U.S. Economy Needs the Power of Digital Health

February 11th, 2013
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As the new year slips into higher gear, and our national focus shifts from politics to policymaking, we need to take a fresh look at how innovation can give the economy a boost.
 
While President Obama’s second inauguration speech mentions the need for new technology (harnessing new ideas and technologies to remake, revamp, reform and empower various sectors of society), I find myself asking: what kind of innovation? How could digital health play a role?
 
Harvard professor and innovation pioneer Clayton Christensen calls for a better mix of the three main types of innovations: empowering, sustaining and efficiency. He observes that empowering innovations, which create jobs by transforming complex and expensive products into simpler, cheaper products, are in unusually short supply. Meanwhile, sustaining innovations, which replace old products with new models (that nonetheless operate the same way), and efficiency innovations, which reduce costs of existing products, are abundant, but don’t help jump-start an economy as much. Today, he says, efficiency innovations are just being reinvested back into more efficiency innovations.
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Generation Digital Health—Observations from the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show

January 21st, 2013
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I attended the Consumer Electronics Show (#CES2013) in Las Vegas earlier this month. While this was my second year at the Digital Health Summit portion, it was the first year that Qualcomm delivered the keynote address for the entire show. While there, I found myself building upon the “Born Mobile” theme of Qualcomm’s keynote show—which unfortunately came across as parody, as seen in this piece in The Verge—in pointing out that we are experiencing a digital revolution, of which mobile wireless devices and networks are just two subcomponents.
 
Digital Health is the convergence of the digital revolution with health. “Health” is writ large in this context, and includes sports, fitness, and wellness, plus medicine and healthcare. At CES, we could see the convergence of the following key digital elements:
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Four Health Innovation Drivers

June 12th, 2012
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In a previous blog post reporting in after the 2012 AusMedTech (Australia Medical Technology) conference, we discussed the need for healthcare technology companies to quickly demonstrate how their innovations add value.
 
My presentation at AusMedTech stressed four important elements that are driving the industry now, and that will continue to do so over the next decade. We believe that addressing each of these areas – as outlined below by me and my colleague Ken Walz – will be vitally important as healthcare innovators seek to demonstrate the value of their technologies.
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Optimizing Digital Health’s Future Calls for New Regulatory Vision: A Discussion with a U.S. Congressional Aide

May 11th, 2012
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Washington, DC, is an impressive city. But too many times, one leaves our nation’s capital scratching one’s head. Understanding how large, complex agencies deal with equally large, complex issues is puzzling enough, but issues that change on an almost-daily basis—such as optimizing the potential of advances in digital health—call for much faster solutions than our bureaucratic system is designed to address.
 
To discuss ways to resolve the puzzles inherent in regulating digital health opportunities, Paul Sonnier and I met with Keith Studdard, the Legislative Director to U.S. Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn), who has been advocating a clearer, more streamlined regulatory approach to new developments in digital health.  What was our reaction coming home? Instead of scratching our heads, we were pleasantly surprised by the level of engagement and dedication we found.
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Making Telehealth Work in the Clinic

February 21st, 2012
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In a previous blog post for Popper and Co, I discussed how telehealth can be a life-saving tool in rural and urban settings. As devices get more versatile and affordable, we will start seeing additional efficiencies in health care delivery. Moreover, patients will (if they aren’t already) start demanding it. But does telehealth work in every situation? And how should telehealth systems developers adapt to an individual practice’s needs?
 
The Center for Telehealth and Cybermedicine Research found that while enthusiasm for telehealth was high among patients and (some) caregivers, not every clinic could perceive a benefit. It is very easy, for example, to lose the advantages of this technology without first doing some preliminary research on your particular center and patients. Telehealth must be needs-driven, filling gaps in health services that are not effectively met.
 
In some cases, demand for telehealth may not be very high. If patients can find care at other facilities or may be reluctant to seek care for certain diseases, then telehealth may not be helpful. Similarly, if practitioners are reluctant to use telehealth tools, this reluctance may place such a system in jeopardy.
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Matchmaking: Digital Technology and Health Care?

February 16th, 2012
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In a recent Forbes article on the last FutureMed meeting in California, writer David Shaywitz expressed his concern that technology developers are more focused on their technology than with how it may be accepted by health care practitioners. But he also expressed hope that, soon, technology and the practice of health care might experience a meeting of minds (and possibly even hearts).
 
At Popper and Co., we make an effort to search for technology solutions that can truly make a difference in health care, and often we’ve been skeptical of the “latest shiny new thing.” While I believe that sometimes technology apps appear to be solutions in search of a problem, we are arriving at a point in time when a happy merger between health care and health technology may be feasible. Why?

     

  • Because we (the scientific and technology community) now understand enough about biology to adapt technology to address real clinical problems. Our knowledge of genetics alone allows us to design targeted (i.e., “personalized”) therapeutic solutions.
  • Because cost and resource constraints have led to patients being more engaged in the price and quality of their health care.
  • Because consumer power has forced many practitioners (and technologists) to consider the “might” of this market.
  • Because new technologies facilitate fundamental health service innovation for providers as well as patients.

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Telehealth Saves Lives, Reduces Costs: A Physician’s Perspective

February 9th, 2012
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Wireless technology is evolving in positive ways. It’s now more affordable, more accessible (thanks to broadband capacity), and more portable (via devices such as tablets and smartphones). And it is no exaggeration to say that this technology has made a life-saving difference for many patients who otherwise would not get care.
 
At the Center for Telehealth and Cybermedicine Research at the University of New Mexico, we studied the ability of telehealth tools (e.g., video connections, conference calling, electronic record sharing) to improve access and outcomes of rural New Mexicans suffering from a variety of health problems. In that role, we have been the incubator for several applications of telehealth designed to integrate the technologies that address important healthcare needs and gaps in access. One example was hepatitis C. While this disease is curable, multiple treatments are required and patients must be monitored for adverse effects. Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) was initially incubated in our Center under the leadership of Dr. Sanjeev Arora. That project was recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine demonstrating how the program provided community healthcare providers with the expertise and tools they needed to treat hundreds, if not thousands, of people who previously were receiving no care for hepatitis C. In addition, outcomes of these remote patients were as good as outcomes of patients who traveled (often hundreds of miles) to the University’s medical center in Albuquerque.
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Expert’s View: Trends in Trans-Atlantic Life Science Technology

June 7th, 2011
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In my May 17 blog post, I introduced Dr. Andreas Muehler as one of Popper and Co.’s new strategic advisors. Dr. Muehler brings broad perspectives and business insights, owing in part to his close relationships with established industry leaders in the joint development and commercialization of medical products worldwide. Building upon our last discussion, where I was caught by his enthusiasm as we talked about his past role as CEO for a struggling medical device firm and his experiences positioning products in the global marketplace, I recently talked with Dr. Muehler again to further explore his impressions on the differences between the E.U. and U.S. markets for new life science technologies.
 
CP:  You’ve served within or supported the pharmaceutical and medical device industries in both Europe and the U.S. What do you see as some of the differences?

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