With the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show (CES) right around the corner, I have been talking to a lot of consumer health companies who are integrating wireless technology into their solutions in some capacity — be it smart phone applications; on-body sensors with ultra-low power radios; or cellular-embedded health devices.
As consumers clip on their newest pedometer before a run, or enter that holiday ham into a calorie-counting app, they may not realize the integral role that these wireless health solutions will play in the future of the health care industry.
It is becoming more widely accepted that the integration of 3G technology can lower health care costs and enable more efficient treatment, therapies and monitoring in previously underserved communities. To use one of my favorite mantra’s, wireless health collapses time and space in health careSM. And much of these cost savings will be an effect of consumers taking charge of their own personal health performance.
Most people know more about the health of their cars than they do about their own bodies. We adhere to the required car maintenance schedules, fill up the tank when fuel runs low and take our dashboards’ warning lights seriously. But how many of us comply with the medication regimens our physicians prescribe? Or drink more water when we know we are dehydrated?
In fact, when we don’t feel well, many of us continue to avoid the doctor’s office like the plague! In the past, people had to rely on physicians for check-ups, diagnosis and general health tips. But all of this is changing. Fast.
Consumers can now monitor their health and fitness real-time, better manage their chronic diseases or avoid them altogether, and receive highly personal health advice based on previously collected vitals and data.
Medical device, pharmaceuticals, and health service companies understand this, and are taking advantage of the computing capability of advanced wireless handsets and the robust network infrastructure underlying today’s mobile broadband networks, to deliver unique new device features and applications that empower consumers with personal health tools that fire the imagination.
Qualcomm is in the thick of it all, marrying our expertise in wireless technologies with companies innovating in the consumer health space. Our Internet of Everything Modules™ (IEM) represents a good example. The IEM is a low-power, compact wireless module that’s designed to enable a new wave of highly personalized mobile experiences and services. It’s real-time. It’s location-aware. It comes with integrated GPS, an accelerometer, Bluetooth compatibility and BrewMP standard interfaces. And its very compact size allows it to be easily integrated into next-generation wearable mobile devices.
In 2010 Qualcomm, Hughes Telematics and American Medical Alert Corporation partnered to deliver mobile health services through a joint venture, Lifecomm LLC, which plans to launch an IEM embedded mobile Personal Emergency Response Solution (PERS) focused on seniors and their caregivers in 2011.
To hear more news about Qualcomm’s role in the consumer wireless health space and see some of these solutions up close and personal, swing by our booth #30313, South Hall at CES. Pick up a free gourmet cup of coffee (yes, free!). And see how a few of our select partners, BodyMedia, Independa, Lifecomm, and Telcare are leveraging 3G technology to deliver some of the most innovative consumer health solutions available today.
I will also be speaking at the Digital Health Summit on the future of Wireless Health. Hope to see you all there!