DIY Health Monitoring
Do-It-Yourself Health Care, which includes both mobile apps and consumer medical devices, has been named the top healthcare trend for 2015, based on research conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers. Moreover, they also report that, “physicians are expressing much more openness and willingness to consider information about their patients coming from DIY devices.”
Given the fact that in 2013 U.S. health care spending reached $2.9 trillion, with $339.4 billion being paid by consumers out of pocket, health care spending has gotten out of control. Consumers are increasingly paying a more substantial amount to supplement what the medical system provides. Coupled with the increase in consumer health consciousness, it’s no surprise then, that there is a surge in do-it-yourself health monitoring. And this trend shows no signs of slowing down. Advances in technology are making it easier to self-monitor and track common health conditions. Add to the mix the advent and explosion of smart phones and health-related apps, which further enhance our ability to take charge of our own medical issues and often stave off unnecessary doctor visits and medical tests.
We now have easy-to-use and understand glucose monitors, blood pressure cuffs, heart monitors, and other technology that enables us to monitor our own health. Every year, new devices and prototypes flood the Computer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. According to MobiHealthNews, “CES 2015 ended earlier this month, and like last year, a significant portion of the show floor was dominated by digital health products.” Soon it will be common for consumers to own a pulse oximeter wristband, mini-ECG device, or cell-phone connected glucometer.
According to a 2013 report by HIS Technologies, “The world market for consumer medical devices will enjoy steady growth in the years ahead…. Global revenue for consumer medical devices is set to reach $8.2 billion by year-end, up a solid 4 percent from $7.9 billion in 2012. Revenue expansion for the next few years will range from 5 to 9 percent, with industry takings by 2017 amounting to $10.6 billion…. Personal care devices such as activity monitors, body composition analyzers and heart-rate monitors are among the fastest-growing consumer medical devices today, especially in light of the rising number of fitness-conscious consumers. Asia-Pacific is the epicenter of growth, but the Americas as well as the collective Europe-Middle East-Africa (EMEA) region are also prominent centers of market activity.”
All signs point to a burgeoning market for consumer-ready health monitoring devices and Identification Solutions is working to bring several products to the market. We are on the cutting edge of bringing new, previously unheard of technology to individual consumers, as well addressing the global health needs of third world and emerging countries, where access to health care is limited. We are able to do this in a way that takes advantage of smart phone technology and portability, as well as ease of use. By utilizing such technology, health costs can be contained and a broader section of the world’s citizens can gain access through creative applications.