‘Are we there yet? I don’t think so. That’s a challenge for this industry to solve’
NEW ORLEANS—The future of health care is in the home and technology is making it happen, said Harry Wang, the keynote speaker at this week’s Home Health Technology Summit.
“As homes become connected and as people become aware of their options, they’re looking at ways to manage their health at home,” said Wang, senior director of research at Parks Associates, a Dallas-based Internet of Things market research and consulting firm.
Wang discussed his team’s research in mobile technology, emerging technologies and trends in digital health, and the future of this market.
Wang presented a number of trends in home health innovation, including:
- Digital media and communication being used to enhance the wellness experience at home. “Wellness and fitness are being enriched by augmented reality, social connection and personal coaching,” Wang said.
- Smart home sensors and data analytics are improving preventive care. “Sensors provide contextual intelligence to address personal health concerns,” he said.
- Monitoring is being used to predict, not just detect. “Predictive analytics calculate the probability of an adverse event,” he said.
- IoT and reimbursement rule changes will jumpstart the remote diagnostic market. “Home-based remote diagnostic services reduce costs and save patient’s and doctor’s time,” he said.
- Quantified self-care will get into more serious medical fields. “Blood and DNA samples can be collected and analyzed at home,” he said.
Home health care has moved from episodic care and value-based payments to accountable care and bundled payments, but in the future it will move into collaborative care and value-based payment, Wang said. Collaborative care involves the patient, who wants to communicate their needs and wants and needs a sense of independence; the caregiver, who wants deeper engagement and peace of mind; and the provider, who wants better patient care and greater efficiencies, he said.
“If you combine these, it’s a win-win-win,” he said. “Are we there yet? I don’t think so. That’s a challenge for this industry to solve, and technology is playing a role.”