Making healthcare digital devices better, together

Posted on April 25th, 2017 by


It has been estimated that there are over 2.2 million applications on the Apple App Store and 2.7 million on the Google Play store 1 with the numbers increasing by the day. With so much choice, it might be surprising to find that applications (and their related digital devices) remain underutilised within certain industries. In particular, when it comes to healthcare, despite the growing number of apps, uptake and sustained use remain low 2,3,4.

We believe that with growing pressures on healthcare systems and the economy, it is crucial to support people in taking charge of their health; that means making the most of technology. This is why we are trying to uncover the barriers people face in making the most of the healthcare apps. From this we seek to distil the key set of factors which lead to the success of apps and digital devices within healthcare, with the aim of making them better for everyone.

As part of this research, we are investigating what people look for in healthcare apps. We’ve created a short questionnaire that takes approximately 5 minutes to do. Please complete the questionnaire – your responses will make an impact.

For more information, feel free to contact us at healthappsimperial@gmail.com 

Thanks

References:
1. http://news.softpedia.com/news/google-play-store-vs-apple-s-app-store-a-comparison-512601.shtml
2. http://health.asiaone.com/health/health-news/health-apps-abound-usage-low
3. http://www.pewinternet.org/2013/11/26/part-three-tracking-for-health/
4. http://healthland.time.com/2010/10/21/in-the-candy-store-of-iphone-apps-users-treat-health-apps-like-broccoli/

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Virtual Reality: What is it? How does it work? Why should you care?

Posted on August 15th, 2016 by


 

Steph in Solitary Confinement VR

 

What is virtual reality?

Virtual reality (VR) is about making an imaginary environment feel very real – real enough to fully immerse you in a simulated world.

VR is achieved using a head-mounted display (HMD). VR simulations can include visual, tactile, auditory and sometimes even olfactory experiences – you could be fully immersed in a virtual Tuscan garden in the summer, with the wind in your hair, and the smell of jasmine and freshly-cut grass around you.

Lifelike virtual experiences can be enhanced by using omnidirectional treadmills to allow free 360 movement; wired gloves can provide haptic feedback – you could be physically walking around your virtual environment in any direction without bumping into your coffee table; you could even hover your fingers near a virtual fireplace and feel the heat.

 

How does virtual reality work?

Virtual reality headsets or head-mounted displays (HMDs) are made of two video feeds sent to the screen within the HMD, powered by a device or computer

Field of viewoculus_world_demo2

  • Lenses are placed over the display to focus and reshape the picture for each eye
  • The video feed provides a slightly different video angle in front of each eye. This is needed to create a stereoscopic 3D image.
  • The speed of video frames (frame rate) required for VR is higher than that required for normal TV/movie viewing, at a frame rate of between 60 and 120. This makes the experience realistic and immersive; it also avoids causing simulation sickness (similar to travel sickness).

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Transforming the lives of those living with rare disease

Posted on March 23rd, 2016 by


This week’s guest blog comes from Raremark, whose mission is to transform the lives of those living with rare disease by connecting people and knowledge.

Raremark-NewLogo-01

As doctors, you know the best places to get current and reliable scientific information. Maybe you have patients that look up medical information online from trustworthy sources, and come to you with research, but most probably don’t feel the need to. For someone with a rare disease, this is not the case.

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Connecting HIV through social media

Posted on December 10th, 2015 by


The introduction of social media has made it easier for people to share opinions about everything, and anything, on a global scale. Social networks have since evolved to progressively integrate more features and have turned into social platforms with the ability to host conferences, panels and advisory boards.

Health professionals have started to recognise the importance of social media with often patient’s turning to social media to do research on their condition before they visit them.

Symplur, an online platform, started their Healthcare Hashtag Project. This project aimed to connect everyone and anyone in healthcare through social media, by empowering decision-making with real-time access to insights from over a billion healthcare social media data points.

Healthcare Hashtags and HIVaids-ribbon

So how does it work? If you have an active interest in HIV, you may want to know the latest conversations or discussions surrounding this therapy area. Simply type “HIV” in the search box and you will be presented with the latest discussions, tweets and conferences associated with HIV that currently trending on social media. We’ve chosen two examples to share with you but there are many more available through the Healthcare Hashtag Project.

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The IoT in Healthcare

Posted on December 4th, 2015 by


The Internet of Things (IoT) is the next big thing.

It is not only the future, but also the present – it is happening now!

In fact, we can see already some of everyday physical objects connected to each other and the cloud, able to communicate, collect data and exchange it without human intervention. What we once saw in Sci-Fi movies, has gradually become a reality. It is being applied across all verticals, which empowers its overall potential – as in a social network, its value proposition is directly correlated with the increasing number of connections.

Touch pad image

One of the most promising IoT fields is healthcare. On the one side, in an aging population, the need for better quality care, access to care and cost reduction has risen in both public and private sectors. On the other side, consumer trends like the interest in wellness self-management has booming, as infrastructures, tools and applications get more reliable and consistent.

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Medical devices under the microscope

Posted on November 19th, 2015 by


This week’s PharmaTimes magazine explored, among its other thought-provoking pieces, the new EU legislation on medical devices. As the EU’s new medical device legislation enters the final negotiation stages, the article looked at what regulations are being proposed and how the industry could soon be under much greater scrutiny.

When asked to comment, Felix shared his concerns about the clarity of the regulation’s definitions of medical devices and wellness apps.

Read the article, and Felix’s comments, online. Medical devices under the microscope appears on page 22.

 


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