Cris DeLuca is Head of Digital Innovation at Johnson & Johnson’s Innovation Center in Cambridge, MA, where he is responsible for technology strategy, competitive intelligence, knowledge management and digital health innovation frameworks.
How will wearables impact healthcare this year?
There is a tremendous amount of excitement and creativity around healthcare applied wearables. one in 10 people in the US owned a wearable in 2014 and we’ll see that number continue to climb dramatically as products like the Apple Watch are delivered to mass markets. We are also already seeing technology for tracking patient disease progression by combining big data analytics with biosensors in R&D settings. This ecosystem, combined with continued influence of the consumer, stands to advance the field noticeably and immediately.
However, it will be important for entrepreneurs and innovators to put themselves in the shoes of the end user when considering the practicality of wearable healthcare technology. Simply wearing technology alone does not make one healthier. On the front end, it’s also critical to manage common adoption challenges caused by physical barriers, including design options, user experience, and battery life. On the back-end, data privacy, interoperability, security and navigating evolving regulatory considerations need to have a clear strategy from the start. Creating a vision that considers the patient journey, healthcare provider needs, and the economics of payers is fundamental. Creating the right partnerships to support these real challenges can be the differentiator.
You’ll be judging the Wearables in Healthcare Pilot Challenge on April 23rd. What does a winning entry look like to you?
The Medstro team and MedTech Boston have done an incredible job at attracting talented innovators from around the world for the Google Wearables in Healthcare Challenge. With all of the great ideas that have come through, I think what separates the winners will ultimately be evidence-based solutions with data translating into improved outcomes for patients, while considering how the solution fits into the greater healthcare ecosystem.
Jenni Whalen is the Executive Assistant of Editorial at Upworthy. She was previously MedTech Boston's Managing Editor and has an MS in Journalism from Boston University, as well as a BA in Psychology from Bucknell University. Whalen has written for Greatist, Boston magazine, AZ Central Healthy Living and the New England Journal of Medicine, among other places. She has also worked as a conference planner, ghost writer, researcher and content developer.
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