HealthIMPACT’s upcoming events for 2017 (US)

The HealthIMPACT series of mainly single-day events on health tech/HIT’s effect on healthcare now covers several major cities in the US. What this Editor likes about them is that they compress a great deal of information in a single day, with well-presented, relaxed panel discussions with top executives and figures in the industry. They are also held in interesting venues like the Union League Club in NYC. Panels are being hosted this year by former colleagues from Health 2.0 NYC Megan Antonelli of Purpose Events and “The Healthcare IT Guy” Shahid Shah, with new vice chair Mandi Bishop, a HIT entrepreneur who was a Challenge Competitor at #MedMo16. Here’s the HealthIMPACT schedule with links to the individual events:

HealthIMPACT Southwest
Texas Medical Innovation Center | TMCx
April 4th, 2017  Receive a 20% discount off registration–use HIEB2017

HealthIMPACT Southeast
Florida Hospital Innovation Lab, Werner Auditorium, Orlando, FL
May 4th, 2017

HealthIMPACT East
Union League Club, New York, NY
June 5th, 2017 (note that this is a new date, changed from the date on the website)

HealthIMPACT WISE/Women in Information Science Retreat
Sundance Mountain Resort, Sundance, UT
June 23-25, 2017

HealthIMPACT Midwest
Matter Health, Chicago, IL
September 14, 2017

HealthIMPACT West
San Francisco, CA, October 7, 2017

TTA is a media partner of HealthIMPACT for 2017.

What is the future of digital technology in NHS England for the haves and have-nots?

This thoughtful essay published on The King’s Fund blog by David Maguire discusses the uncertain way forward for digitizing health within NHS England as part of the sustainability and transformation plan (STP). There’s a certain lack of vision and support from the top; there is £4.2 billion in funding over the next five years from the Department of Health, but priorities including ‘Paperless by 2020’ are unclear. There needs to be a ‘clear and definitive plan’, but at the same time, local innovation shouldn’t be stifled. Local areas vary widely in capability and resources. As Mr Maguire points out, some are still using Windows XP and others are well advanced in data analytics; some are more willing to take risks and have a “collective vision”. In a funding-constrained environment, local areas may find themselves scraping up, pooling resources to create the systems they need, and sharing that knowledge. Seizing opportunities for digital development in the NHS Hat tip to Susanne Woodman.

A reminder that the Digital Health and Care Congress is on 11-12 July. Preview video and the event page; the Digital Health Congress fact sheet includes information on sponsoring or exhibiting. To make the event more accessible, there are new reduced rates for groups and students, plus bursary spots available for patients and carers. TTA is again a media partner of the Digital Health Congress 2017. Updates on Twitter @kfdigital17

British Journal of Cardiology (BJC) Digital Healthcare Forum’s inaugural meeting

28 April, 9:30am-5pm, Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, London 

Henry Purcell of the BJC was kind enough to post us with information on the first-ever BJC Digital Healthcare Forum. Organized by the BJC in association with the NHS, the Digital Health and Care Alliance (DHACA), and the Telehealth Quality Group, it is a novel ‘hands on’ meeting to assess if digital medicine can fill gaps in healthcare provision throughout the NHS. It is also in response to the massive pressures which winter has wrought on NHS health and social services. The Forum was designed by clinicians and leaders in healthcare informatics for UK commissioners, doctors and other HCPs involved in the management of long-term conditions (cardiovascular, obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes etc.), as well as those engaged in health informatics, IT, and Trust CEOs. Speakers include Dr Malcolm Fisk of De Montfort University, our own Charles Lowe of DHACA, Professor Tony Young, National Clinical Director for Innovation (NHS England) and many more experts in digital health and care. For the latest information and to register, see the event website or the attached PDF.

What are the impacts of NHS CCGs forcing disabled and LTC patients into care homes? (UK)

click to enlargeCare for elderly and disabled goes off the tracks again. A report in the Health Service Journal (subscription required), covered in an opinion piece in the Guardian, indicates that thousands of patients who are disabled and also those who require long-term care may be forcibly put into care homes (US=nursing homes) rather than being treated and maintained in home care. According to the HSJ, “Freedom of Information (FOI) requests from campaign group Disability United found that 37 NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in England were introducing rules about ongoing care that could force up to 13,000 people with health conditions into care homes.” CCGs due to NHS cuts have been setting limits on financing home care, between 10 and 40 percent above the care home option. In other words, where a care home is cheaper, the CCG will withdraw payment for home care, and unless the individual can self-pay or has an advocate who can organize a care plan, that person may be involuntarily moved.

The word ‘institutionalization’ deservedly strikes fear on both sides of the Atlantic as a recipe for patient decline, physical and verbal abuse, theft and generally bad care. It’s a blunderbuss solution to ‘bed-blocking’ which we discussed here [TTA 7 Sep 16]–the care plan becomes ‘move ’em out’. By going this way in policy, NHS England is going counter-trend, against more personalized care delivered in home settings, and setting an unfortunate trend for other countries like the US.

Outside the scope of the article, but in this Editor’s thoughts, is the knock-on effect it will have on the UK’s developers and providers of telehealth and telecare services/TECS designed to support home care. Many of these technologies are in a transition period to the greater capabilities (and freedom from land line) of digital from analogue care, which was discussed in TTA here. Cutting domestic demand may not only be critical not only to companies’ survival, but also to their expansion in the (now far more open to the UK) US market. Readers’ thoughts?

CES 2017

The Consumer Electronics Show is half a century old this year and it click to enlargeis promising to be the biggest show yet. Here are some items that may be of interest to TTA readers.

The conference programme includes a Digital Health Summit and a Wearable Tech Summit (the organisers obviously haven’t been reading the TTA view on wearables so recently produced by Editor Donna). In the Digital Health Summit the top topics are going to be advances in genomics and precision medicine (not sure why this is digital health), Digital medicine and current trends such as “tele-everything”, wearables, aging, digital therapies (what’s that?) and VR. The wearable Summit top topics are the science of wearables, hottest wearable tech thus far and interactive jewelry.

There is a new “Sleep Tech Marketplace” presented by the National Sleep Foundation (no, really, I am not making this up) with 10 companies exhibiting everything from sleep tracking devices (Beddit), a system to mask noise during sleep (Cambridge Sound Systems), ultra thin earphones to wear in bed (Dubs Labs), a water mattress-topper to keep you cool while you sleep, an app to record your dream talking and snoring (Snail App) and a stress reducer.

If you are not attending between tomorrow and the 8th, then you could do worse than follow it on the official CES website or on engadget

NYeC Digital Health Conference (NYC)–next week

NYeC Digital Health Conference, 6-7 December 2016 | New World Stages, New York, NY
The New York eHealth Collaborative’s Digital Health Conference brings together 500 senior-level healthcare industry leaders to learn about new innovations and to foster dynamic conversation addressing how healthcare is being redefined through technology. It is well on track to fill completely, so if you’ve been delaying your booking, now is the time. And our readers enjoy a 10 percent discount.

Updated and expanded agenda here.

Keynote speakers:
• Robert Wachter, MD, Professor and Interim Chairman of the Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, author of “The Digital Doctor: Hope, Hype and Harm at the Dawn of Medicine’s Computer Age” [TTA 16 Apr 15]. (To this Editor, this is a must-see keynote!)
• Steven Johnson, PBS Host and Bestselling Author, “How We Got To Now” and “Where Good Ideas Come From”

Some other speakers: Carol Raphael, the former CEO of Visiting Nurse Service of NY; Kristopher Smith of Northwell Health; James Mault of Qualcomm Life and Aron Gupta of Quartet Health. This year a who’s who of New York’s healthcare and health tech community will gather for two days of networking, lively intellectual exchange, and exploration to see what’s new, what’s cutting edge and what will shape the future of healthcare.

It’s worth taking the trip to NYC for this right before the holidays! For more information, click here for the website.

Telehealth & Telecare Aware Readers receive a 10% registration discount. Click on this link or the sidebar advert. Important–use code TTA when registering. For updates, @NYeHealth. TTA is a conference partner/media partner of the NYeC DHC.

Health tech’s disruptive power in pictures

click to enlarge

One of our Readers works for an agency that developed, under the direction of home care provider CEO Ryan McEniff, a digital health infographic which is packed with facts on how technology is changing healthcare processes, hopefully for the better. It’s a little lengthy but it covers how many tasks will be automated, workforce changes, global investment highlighting the US, Singapore, Canada and Australia, leading accelerators, startups and companies, how markets are accepting technology and the international challenges. What you need for your next meeting! Courtesy of Minute Women Home Care  (@MWhomecare) of Lexington, Massachusetts, Ryan and reader Veronika Gorina. Full infographic follows.

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Who’s hiring? 3rings (UK)

Steve Purdham, who is the Chairman of 3rings, is advising our readers of two new Business Development Manager opportunities with his company.

The ‘Internet of Things’ is going to change the future of care and 3rings is at the centre of this fantastic opportunity. Due to expansion in its operation, 3rings, is looking for two ambitious BDM’s to join our digital team. If you have passion to change things then contact Steve on steve@3rings.co.uk

Full details @ https://news.3rings.co.uk/?p=237

3rings has developed and markets an electrical plug that, when the appliances are used, tracks a person’s activities of daily living. The information is delivered to the 3rings app so that family, friends and neighbors not only know of normal behavior but also when something is ‘off’. (Our past two years of coverage is here.)

A couple more grant opportunities for SMEs

This editor was recently rendered temporarily speechless by an entrepreneur who complained that there was no money available any more to help him start his business. Upon recovering my power of speech I suggested he read Telehealth & Telecare Aware more avidly as we publicise many grants, awards, accelerators and other types of assistance. Here are two more:

mHabitat

mHabitat are launching a Digital Development Lab to accelerate the adoption of digital technologies in mental health.

They anticipate working with around six to eight Digital Development Lab participants over approximately seven months who will have access to a share of a £400k grant to accelerate their technology towards endorsement and adoption by NHS services and service users.

The Lab is open to applications from innovators (more…)

Mobile brain monitoring developments and impact (Israel)

Accelerator/healthcare innovator StartupHealth’s ongoing series Startup Health Now! (#94) interviews Israeli entrepreneur Nathan Intrator, founder of Neurosteer, on developing new applications for brain monitoring in TBI cases, the impact home monitoring will have on patients and Israel’s burgeoning digital health scene. Highlights from the 18 minute video from this past June at Wearable Tech + Digital Health Conference, New York, NY include applications to monitor those who are minimally conscious to assist doctors in treatment; how data from remote patient home monitoring can detect early stage problems so that doctors can take proactive care, reducing cost and disruption; and Israel’s digital health ‘corridors’. Video

Autumn/winter UK health tech events–Extra #1

SEHTA (South East Health Technologies Alliance), one of the largest healthcare networking organizations in the UK, has two upcoming digital health-related events of interest to those in London and the Southeast. Hat tip to Clare Ansett of SEHTA for the details.

London Innovation Surgeries 26 Sept at Queen Mary University, London. There are only two spots left so act quickly. More information here. SEHTA is in partnership with Kent Surrey Sussex Academic Health Science Network (KSS AHSN), GLA, MedCity, Digital Health.London and Enteric HTC.

How to Access Funding 12 October at City Hall, London. This is a ‘how to’ workshop on finding funding from crowdfunding to public/private sector. Partners are KSS AHSN, GLA, MedCity and Digital Health.London. More information here. Free but limited registration.

 

Add 3 years to ‘Paperless 2020’: Robert Wachter at The King’s Fund (UK)

The King’s Fund has helpfully published a report on the (duelling?) presentations at last week’s NHS Health and Care Innovation Expo by Robert Wachter, MD, the ‘digital doctor’ (our review of excerpts from his 2015 book here), and Secretary of State Jeremy Hunt on the feasibility of paperless health records. There is plenty of funding (£4.2 billion) for NHS.UK announced earlier this year, but plans are still sketchy. The adoption of the GOV.UK Verify service used in other parts of the UK government is intended to “standardise the process to activate patient accounts without the need for them to visit a GP surgery in person”. NHS is having another crack at an app library, and there was a bit of surprise, according to the writer, that Secretary Hunt said that fitness data will be integrated into NHS patient records. But Dr Wachter cautions that he’s walking back the 2020 date he advocated for full paperless records to 2023. He recognized that implementation in all but the most advanced hospitals (a handful) isn’t feasible. There are too many competing priorities and too little funding (and, this Editor would add, too many HIT threats like hacking and ransomware). Only the most “digitally-sophisticated hospitals” would be invited to be ‘global exemplars’ in exchange for matched funding, in his view. The King’s Fund will be publishing more about this later in September, presumably as a prelude to their upcoming Designing digital services around users’ needs on 6 Oct.  Wachter watch Hat tip to Reader Suzanne Woodman

Patient engagement: a digital divide in health technology accessibility

click to enlargeGuest editor Sarianne Gruber (@subtleimpact) scopes the ‘digital divide’ separating those who need health services the most from the patient engagement and other tools they need in this article. The studies are US, but the lessons apply anywhere in the world. This Editor notes that many patient engagement tools are over-designed and over-complicated for users, even if they are fairly competent and frequently use online and mobile. (I entered a ‘pilot’ of a stress reduction program which proved to be anything but–and quitting because it is invasive and the reporting is ludicrously burdensome.)

To developers: Imagine your patient engagement platform being used by a person on the less sophisticated, less educated and disconnected end of the spectrum–or by someone less able due to physical (vision, touch) or cognitive impairment. Put on bad glasses and gloves–and start. Better yet, find a few people and put it in front of them. If we can make the mental shift in developing mobile apps for Africa or India, certainly we can do so for Americans, Britons and Europeans.

What the Studies are Showing

Hallmarked as a solution to improve healthcare quality, cost and safety, studies are showing health technology is up against a “digital divide” when it comes to patient engagement. At the Internet Governance Forum, Pew Research Center’s Lee Rainie, Director of Internet, Science and Technology Research presented the Fact Tank Report discussing the “digital divide” that exists in 2016. The report documents that lower income, less educated, non-white, seniors and rural communities are the least likely to have home internet, home broadband, mobile connectors and smartphones. This summer’s medical publications, the Journal of the American Medical Association and the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, released studies where demographic and socioeconomic data marked the root causes to limited or no access to digital technology, thus hindering the benefits and improved outcomes it can bring to the neediest and most costly populations. Here are the highlights from each study.

Trends in Seniors’ Use of Digital Health Technology in the United States, 2011-2014, a research letter submitted from Harvard Medical School’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, appeared in the August 2, 2016, JAMA. Authors, David M. Levine, MD, MA, Stuart Lipsitz, ScD, and Jeffrey A. Linder, MD, MPH,FACP made mention that this study, based on the National Health and Aging Trends survey (NHATS), was exempted from the Partners HealthCare Human Research/IRB Committee. The research team included participates to the longitudinal NHATS survey in 2011. The participants were re-surveyed annually on everyday (nonhealth) and digital health use until 2014. The research team acknowledged that this may be the first nationally representative study to examine trends in the adoption of digital health technology by seniors age 65 years and older who are community-dwelling Medicare beneficiaries.

Here are some the reported statistics from the study: (more…)

Scotland recognized by EC on innovative tech, practices for healthy aging

Scotland recognized as ‘reference site’ for innovation in healthy aging. The European Innovation Partnership Commission on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP on AHA), an initiative of the European Commission, since 2012 has awarded select regional and local areas ‘reference site’ status. To quote from their site, “Reference Sites are highly inspirational ecosystems, delivering creative and workable solutions that improve the lives and health of older people. These solutions can be scaled-up and replicated across the EU.”

This year, the 74 sites include Scotland. Previously, Scotland had been a three-star evaluation site twice for the national telecare programme and the joint improvement team’s work on anticipatory care planning. The reference site solutions include digital solutions via NHS 24 and the Health and Social Care Alliance in Scotland. The Reference Sites Award Ceremony is will take place in Brussels at the next European Summit on Innovation for Health and Active Ageing, 6-8 December 2016. Holyrood, Alliance Scotland release  Hat tip to Mike Clark via Twitter

The difficulty in differentiating telemedicine and telehealth

Our Editors have always tried to cleanly define the differences between telemedicine, telehealth and telecare, even as they blur in industry use. (See our Definitions sidebar for the latter two.) But telemedicine, at least on this side of the Atlantic, has lost linguistic ground to telehealth, which has become the umbrella term that eHealth wanted to be only two or three years ago. Similarly, digital health, connected health and mHealth have lost ground to health tech, since most devices now connect and incorporate mobility. And there are sub-genres, such as wearables, fitness trackers and aging tech.

Poor telehealth grows ever fuzzier emanations and penumbra! Now bearing the burden of virtual visits between doctor and patient, doctor-to-doctor professional consults, video conferencing (synchronous and asynchronous), remote patient monitoring of vital signs and qualitative information (ditto), and distance health monitoring to treat patients, it also begins to embrace its data: outcome-based analytics, population health and care modeling. Eric Wicklund accumulates a pile of studies from initial-heavy organizations: WHO, HIMSS, HHS, Center for Connected Health Policy (CCHP), ATA, TRC Network. All of which shows, perhaps contrary to Mr Wicklund’s intentions, how confusing simple concepts have become. mHealth Intelligence

Funding opportunity for digital health projects in the UK outside London

Funding opportunity for digital health projects

Interactive Healthcare Fund is for businesses (SMEs) who wish to bring innovative digital health and wellbeing products and services to market in the NHS and wider health and social care marketplace

Funded by Creative England’s Regional Growth Fund and managed by Creative England in partnership with the Yorkshire & Humber Academic Health Science Network (Yorkshire & Humber AHSN), this Interactive Healthcare Fund is for businesses (SMEs) who wish to bring innovative digital health and wellbeing products and services to market in the NHS and wider health and social care marketplace.

Key Information

  • £250,000 will be available via investments of up to £50,000 per application
  • Companies must be based in England, outside Greater London
  • The fund opened on Monday 4th April 2016 and close on Friday 17th June 2016

Funding will support the development of innovative concepts using digital technology to improve patient care and health services, in response to the following priority areas:

  • Citizen empowerment and maintaining independence for people living with Long Term Conditions (LTCs);
  • Medicines adherence and optimisation;
  • Public health and wellbeing priorities (e.g. obesity, alcohol and smoking cessation) and reducing inequalities in health;
  • Patient safety and falls prevention;
  • Improving mental health and wellbeing (including young people’s mental health).

We will be looking for projects which can demonstrate knowledge of health and social care challenges developed through working with clinical or expert patient groups or both, and the technology skills and the ambition to respond to an identified health and/or social care need.

Here are the FAQs and Application Guidelines, and for applications go here – for further information please contact tim.evans@creativeengland.co.uk (eligibility and technical queries) or p.hedley-takhar@yhahsn.com (healthcare priority areas).