While they may not inspire parades or fireworks displays (quite yet), plenty of innovative technologies are revolutionizing healthcare. Our HIT List this Fourth of July week waves the flag for mHealth, the IoT, video visits and other status quo challengers.

  1. Mobile health momentum. By the end of 2015, mHealth could save up to $290 billion in global healthcare costs annually. Current tools include everything from sensors that track vitals such as blood pressure, glucose levels and hydration to asthma inhalers that monitor environmental conditions potentially dangerous to asthma sufferers. Check out this infographic to learn more about future innovations such as mobile phones equipped to screen for cervical cancer and a skin patch that alerts your phone when it’s time to reapply sunscreen.
  2. Goldminers vs. bartenders. Wearable or implanted devices, smartphone apps and other mobile technologies are upending healthcare delivery as we know it, making it possible to access and analyze digitized pictures of our health 24/7. These experts believe two new data-based models will emerge: “goldminers” that remotely monitor and coordinate care for patients with complex conditions and “bartenders” that empower consumers with personalized health information and advice. That’s certainly food for thought.
  3. Healthy prospects for IoT. The new kid on the block in healthcare devices is the senstroller — a combination sensor and microcontroller. Thanks to the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT), these devices not only gather data but also evaluate and communicate it. For example, they could alert emergency services when a remotely monitored heart patient registers vital signs that raise concerns. The possibilities sound promising.
  4. The evolving CIO. The role of the healthcare CIO is expanding well beyond that of go-to person for fixing employee email (still a common request) to deep involvement in cultural transformation, overseeing major budgets and leveraging data to improve care. As CIO workloads balloon in scope, the ability to make well-informed recommendations for product and vendor partners becomes critical. See what other skills are key to success.
  5. Value in virtual visits. New research shows that nearly 60% of physicians are interested in conducting video visits with patients, and almost 70% of those find telemedicine superior to either email or telephone calls for diagnosing health issues. The survey also found that 86% of physicians felt they could rely on video visits for medication management and prescription renewals, while 80% were willing to use them for chronic disease management. More evidence that “the times, they are a-changin’.”
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