Nov 20, 2018
Medtech and Big tech are the perfect partnership
Australia is one of the leading global adopters of the smartphone with 88% of the population owning a device. Fitness bands and smart watches are also growing in popularity. This is proving to be a boom for the health sector that contributes $30 billion to the Victorian economy alone each year and is the largest and fastest growing source of employment.
Technology is courting the healthcare industry
Apple and other technology companies have been indicating that they want to enter the health sector for several years. Apple has been improving the health and data components of its smart devices recently from improved health sensors to sponsoring clinical trials. Google has also entered the market with over 180 patents for its artificial intelligence and healthcare research business, while Apple has over 50 patents that turn the iPhone into a medical device and monitor biometric data. Microsoft also has over 70 patents that expand its ability to develop its artificial intelligence and monitoring devices for chronic diseases.
These are all clear signals that technology companies want to become major players in the healthcare industry.
Healthcare companies are partnering with technology
Many healthcare companies are taking advantage of this new technology by creating apps that can assist patients. One example of this is Zimmer Biomet, a musculosketal healthcare company that has partnered with Apple to help patients recovering from knee and hip replacement surgery. They’ve created the mymobility app that lets patient communicate with their surgical care teams through their Apple Watch. Patients can send and receive messages from their surgeons and see exercise videos and reminders to help them prepare or recover from surgery. The app also collects patient feedback and health and activity data directly through the Apple Watch. This combined data will give researchers new insights into how care impacts surgeries. Zimmer Biomet is also conducting a clinical study that will assess the impact of the app on the overall outcomes and costs in almost 10,000 joint replacement patients in the US.
Apple and Android watches are also using artificial intelligence for other health issues from detecting diabetes to monitoring major depressive disorder. DeepHeart detected diabetes with 85% accuracy in 14,000 wearable users. This was based on the individual’s heart rate and step count that was collected by the device. This technology has the potential to be life-changing to over 370 million people who are believed to have diabetes worldwide.
Cognition Kit is another technology that is leveraging the Apple Watch. It monitors and evaluates patients suffering from major depressive disorder. When wearing the device the app can test the moods and monitor cognition of subjects while on antidepressant monotherapy. The app also measures cognition in people in everyday life rather than in a testing environment.
With medtech on the rise, there’s increased opportunity for healthcare and technology businesses to collaborate. A key part of any partnership is the people that you have onboard, that’s why it’s important to work with an agency who can help you find the best talent for your business.