A host of new healthcare technologies are turning science fiction into fact and promising to improve, extend and even save the lives of millions. Technological health advancements already include a watch that detects and immediately reports a seizure to family members and a sensor embedded in a shirt that monitors heart rate, temperature and activity levels.
New devices and physician services supported by wireless technology – commonly referred to as mHealth – now play an integral role in healthcare, delivering early warnings and relevant health data to family members and providers to enable better and faster care.
Scanadu is a startup developing transformative ideas for healthcare. The medical and mobile-based company developed a prototype scanner. When placed at the temple, the scanner reads blood pressure, breathing and stress levels, and then transmits the data via Bluetooth to a smartphone for sharing with a doctor. The device, inspired by the iconic “Star Trek” tricorder, is turning heads, and the company recently announced $10.5 million in funding from multiple investors to help produce a commercial version.
Verizon Wireless is developing futuristic solutions for healthcare providers to help them improve network security and increase mobility and telemedicine through cloud technologies and connected devices. One solution is Converged Health Management, which gives clinicians access to patient data and biometrics across secure devices so they can help patients manage their health easily while at home or on the go.
The company is also empowering entrepreneurs to develop innovative ideas related to mHealth through its Powerful Answers Award contest. The 2013 winners, which were announced at CES 2014, included Smart Vision Labs in the healthcare category. Smart Vision Labs has developed a smart eye barometer for portable vision examination. The device attaches to a smartphone and can remotely examine an eye with a single snapshot, measuring the eye’s refractive errors. More than 500 million people around the world who cannot access eye examinations could have their vision tested and receive prescription glasses thanks to the new mHealth device.
Today’s healthcare technology combines ingenuity and collaboration and provides a blueprint to help tackle the world’s biggest healthcare problems.
Photo Credit: LAS VEGAS, NV - JANUARY 08: Verizon Powerful Answers Healthcare Award winner Smart Vision Labs Co-Founder Yaopeng Zhou (L) and Verizon Chairman and CEO Lowell McAdam appear on stage during the Verizon Powerful Answers Award winners unveiling at the 2014 International CES at The Venetian Las Vegas on January 8, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Bryan Steffy/Getty Images for Verizon Wireless)