At HIMSS19, the electronics company is discussing its partnerships for digital brain health assessment tools and its long-term efforts toward data-driven health insight.

How Samsung platforms are supporting health tech’s toolmakers

By Dave Muoio
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Samsung’s inroads into healthcare have taken numerous forms over the years, but often the international electronics company is happy to serve as the technological backbone of its partners’ novel health products.

The company's HIMSS19 showing suggests that the coming year will be little exception, with Samsung showcasing a number of health assessment tools and provider workflow products supported by the company’s hardware and software platforms.

“We provide the hardware and they build the applications on top of that, and in some cases there needed to be a level of customization that they were able to do using our customization platform, called Knox,” Dr. David Rhew, chief medical officer at Samsung Electronics America, told MobiHealthNews.

“We’ve also been sponsors of clinical trials to evaluate how this could be used in the clinical setting, [and] there’s also been other examples … with some of the medical devices that are out there where we’re essentially replacing those with a Samsung device, allowing one to actually control their meds with the device. … We really have a broad spectrum of ways that we work with partners across the board.”

At a Wednesday panel moderated by Rhew, three of Samsung’s partners will specifically be discussing their brain health-focused products and technologies: Quadrant Biosciences, maker of a validated cognitive function assessment through a tablet and BlueTooth sensors; SyncThink, which gauges brain health using the eye tracking features of GearVR headsets; and AccendoWave, whose tablet and headset platform encourages a meditative state while simultaneously tracking brain wave activity.

“We’ll be talking about things such as concussions, how one assesses [them] and how we can use technology to improve one’s wellbeing," Rhew said.

While Samsung devices and Knox platform are today playing a role in clinical care — largely through a handful of digital health partnerships tackling senior care, patient information management and engagement, remote monitoring, internal healthcare communications and more — Rhew explained that the company is also cognizant of consumers’ increasing reliance on connected devices. In the long term, the electronics maker wants to leverage these smart products alongside technologic advances like 5G and artificial intelligence, driving new healthcare insights that could support general wellness or more focused patient health initiatives.

“One of the big initiatives we have going on at Samsung is helping to connect devices and bring the data from those devices into a common platform so we can draw insights from them, [and] these devices can be everyday objects — a smartphone, a wearable, a tablet, an appliance [like] a refrigerator, a TV, could be other sensors and other types of things that are out there,” Rhew said.

“These are all different pieces to that broader puzzle, because when you start with the different devices, based on the use case and the specific information that will reside on that device, these devices can then potentially communicate to a broader platform that would allow us to perform some higher level computation. So, we’re really excited about the solutions that we have today, but as we think about the future, it’ll be about how all of this fits together into a broader common platform that allows us to deal in that kind of data flow.”

Samsung will be demonstrating its healthcare initiatives at booth 5247 on the HIMSS19 exhibit hall, and at the “Data Meets Diagnosis: How Technology is Changing Brain Health Assessments” panel headed by Rhew, held at 3:00 p.m. Wednesday, February 13 in room W224.

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