mRound-up: mHealth and related newsbits

By Brian Dolan
05:23 am

Always Innovating Touch BookMobile Marketing Blog re-printed highlights from U.N-Vodafone Foundation Technology Partnership's head Claire Thwaites' recent column in Mobile Word Focus Magazine. "Mobile technology is becoming the most prevalent means of storing and transmitting data in order to improve the health of millions of people," she wrote. Revisit our interview with Thwaites' here.

The New York Times has a great piece on the difficulty of implementing EHRs in small practices. The Primary Care Information Project in New York City, led by Dr. Farzad Mostashari, aims to help small practices do just that. The project's 50-member staff provides centralized technical support and education for doctors and other cargivers. "There's no way small practices can effectively implement electronic health records on their own," Dr. Mostashari said. "This is not the iPhone." I would add: But it should be, or, at least, EHRs should interface with some sort of wireless device whether it's the iPhone or a more practical, larger screened device like a mobile clinical assistant tablet.

Humana, CIGNA and Kaiser Permanente know that using games to help people learn how to be more healthy really works. Do you? Forget the Wii, mobile phones are wonderful, ubiquitous and rather cheap platforms for these health games. 

At the DEMO conference yesterday, Always Innovating debuted its new Touch Book netbook, which claims to have 10 to 15 hours of battery life, weigh under 2 pounds and starts at $299. (Pictured.)

Not much of a contest promoter here, but DiabetesMine has a highly relevant one: "Do you have an idea for an innovative new diabetes device or web application? This is your chance to win up to $10,000 to realize your design concept, and potentially help transform life with diabetes for millions of people!" You've heard us and most people in the medical device industry say it: user interface counts and is key for driving better care. This contest rightly recognizes that. Check out the contest's video here.

The new "health czar" Nancy-Ann DeParle is stepping down as a managing director of CCMP Capital. DeParle focused on healthcare investments at CCMP. She was administrator for what is now the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services prior to the stint at CCMP.

medGadget has the scoop on a project at MIT that hopes to improve tactile assist listening systems for the deaf. The system converts voice received by a microphone into vibration applied to the skin. Mobile phones already have all the necessary electronic components, the team is now trying to convert their prototype into a wholly-mobile phone-based solution.

Call to action: Healthcare providers need to embrace social media now. "It's not Facebook, Twitter, or the iPhone. Rather, it's patients using any tool to interact with the internet and record medical information - their data, their stories, their thoughts and experiences with the medical system. And healthcare providers, already behind the curve, may find it impossible to catch up unless they begin to become part of the conversation. Embracing social media may hurt at first, but it's a lot less pain than the surprise bear hug it can give you."


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