Digital transformation is set to revolutionize how hospitals deliver care. But is digital technology being harnessed equally effectively across all aspects of the healthcare system? “Not quite,” pointed out Pamina Göttelmann, Business Development Manager of imito AG. “Digital technology is well-adopted in areas such as diagnostics and treatment. But if you look at systems for documentation management and communications, technology can still play a bigger role in improving how these processes work.”

In hospitals today, for every hour a physician spends with a patient, they spend an estimated two hours updating the patient’s electronic health record. Unsurprisingly, a recent survey by Merritt Hawkins found that more than 78% of physicians experience periodic feelings of professional burnout due to factors such as loss of clinical autonomy, diminished time with patients, and the administrative burdens of updating electronic health records. “The workload and documentation load of nurses and doctors have increased. Today, everything needs to be documented, and this can be incredibly time-consuming. This is where new technologies can help,” she elaborated.

We rely on medical professionals to provide excellent medical care especially in their direct interactions with patients. So, when hospitals utilize digital technology to improve their legacy documentation management and communication systems, doctors and nurses will be able to focus on what matters most – the patient.

Smartphone technology makes better doctors

We recently spoke with Pamina, who shared with us about how her team is harnessing smartphone technology to streamline clinical processes in hospitals in Switzerland. The imito mobile app integrates seamlessly into the various systems used in hospitals (e.g. user identification, electronic medical records, archival of images), equipping medical professionals with a user-friendly tool to document photos or videos and communicate directly at a patient’s bedside, scan and save important documents, and digitally measure wounds, everything directly saved in electronic medical records, only while using a smartphone.

 

 

Photos: Imito AG

“Smartphone technology is not a new technology, but it is relatively under-utilized in the healthcare sector, especially in hospitals,” she explained. At least officially. According to survey results, more than 50% of doctors who work in hospitals use their smartphones for clinical documentation. These are exchanged via Messenger apps such as Whatsapp to gather feedback from more experienced colleagues. Under these conditions, data security is a concern.

When implemented effectively, however, app technology can help keep electronic health records accurate and facilitate the transfer of patient medical data between different healthcare institutions.

The cost of going digital

The benefits of digitally transforming processes in hospitals are well-documented. In fact, healthcare professionals Pamina’s team spoke to want these systems improved. But convincing decision-makers in hospital management to invest can be a challenge. “If the IT department in the hospital is strong and innovative, they are more likely to get pilots funded. Otherwise budget can be a real issue,” shared Pamina.

This is because overhauling legacy documentation management and communication systems, while necessary, can be costly. As a significant example, The Lucerne Cantonal Hospital purchased a new clinical informational system from the American software manufacturer, Epic, for 65.4 million francs (excluding MWST) in 2016. This cost includes the investment and operational costs for 8 years. A centralized IT solution for all medical, patient-related, and administrative data, implementing it requires the hospital to significantly rethink how its systems operate, how its medical professionals work, and the care that its patients receive.

Though hospitals that opt for digital health products that integrate with their current systems instead of a complete overhaul will find it lighter on their wallets, budgets for such changes still remain tight. This is where having the support of healthcare professionals can make a huge difference. “You have to be very patient. But if your product’s core functionalities are based on solving real pain points that doctors and nurses feel every day, it will eventually succeed. If you show healthcare professionals the potential benefits, their support could mean convincing hospital management to implement your solution,” explained Pamina.

Transforming patient care by supporting digital hospitals in improving its processes, therefore, is a marathon, not a sprint.

What’s next 

The future of the digital hospital looks promising. Many new technologies continue to emerge to bridge the gap between patient care and process. New models of digital hospitals continue to develop, such as the “cognitive hospital”, a next-generation hospital that is a “smart” facility itself and a strategic partner in patient care.

However, much of this future depends on how the healthcare industry solves this major challenge: Ensuring medical data security while enabling interoperability between systems. “The digital hospital is data-driven. Sharing medical data across healthcare institutions, however, is so difficult because it remains in isolated information silos. This is one of the reasons why progress continues to be slow,” concluded Pamina.

 


About Pamina Göttelmann

Pamina_GAfter completing her master thesis “Setting Investment Priorities for Mobile Solutions in Hospitals”, Pamina deepened her acquired knowledge with valuable field experience in mHealth. As a project manager at the University Hospital of Zurich, she initiated the introduction of mobile clinical app solutions in the hospital and was responsible for the development of its corporate mobile strategy. She has co-authored and shared some of her field experience in two publications. Pamina joined imito in November 2018 as the Business Development Manager.


About the author

Aisha Schnellmann is a Singaporean sociologist by training, interested in healthcare, education, and sustainability issues. She is passionate about producing content that promotes meaningful dialogue, focusing on print and digital content that resonates with a strong call-to-action. Based in Zurich, her interest in digital healthcare grew from the conversations she had with committed medical staff in rural hospitals in Asia, who remain hard-pressed with the technology available to them.

For more information about the next “Women in Digital Health” events

Artificial intelligence (AI) is set to transform the healthcare industry, poised to impact the cost, quality, and access to healthcare worldwide. From streamlining the drug research process, enabling personalized patient care, to fixing inefficient miscommunication within medical institutions, the list of ways in which AI will shape how we deliver patient care continues to grow. In fact, according to a research report by Global Market Insights, the global ‘Healthcare Artificial Intelligence Market’ is expected to surpass USD13 billion by 2025. The healthcare industry however, continues to present challenges that threaten to slow down this progress. What are the key opportunities and obstacles facing companies and institutions developing healthcare artificial intelligence, and how will they affect you? 

 We recently spoke to Susanne Suter, software engineer at Supercomputing Systems AG, at the ‘Women in Digital Health’ event where she was a guest speaker. She shared with us about these opportunities and challenges, and the innovative healthcare projects her team is currently working on to harness AI technology for good.

How do AI and machine learning work?

 “When we talk about AI nowadays, we mean data-driven systems and machine learning,” explained Susanne. During a training process, machines are essentially fed a tremendous volume of high-quality data, what each piece of data means. When this learning phase is completed, the machines are able to predict or classify any new data that is inputted based on its stored knowledge – hence developing its intelligence.

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This ability of AI to analyze tremendous volumes of medical data and recognize meaningful patterns within these data sets has proven groundbreaking in healthcare innovation.

The benefits of AI

 For example, AI technology has made it possible to detect potentially life-threatening medical issues in patients early enough so that they can be treated quickly. Supercomputing Systems AG is working on a project with Prof.Dr.med. Emanuela Keller from the University Hospital in Zurich, to develop an AI research system that monitors and analyses real-time medical data of patients at the neuro-intensive care unit, predicting for example the occurrence of brain hypoxia in patients before it happens so that effective preventive action can be taken.

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Pharmaceutical companies are also exploring ways to adopt AI technology in drug development; speeding up the drug discovery process and reducing costs. For example, Berg Health is using massive volumes of data from patients with diseases such as prostate cancer in order to identify new targets and develop new drugs. In Europe, global biopharmaceutical company Sanofi recently signed a 250 million Euros collaboration-deal with leading British drug design company Exscientia to discover bispecific small-molecule drugs against metabolic diseases.

The success of AI technology in healthcare, therefore, hinges fundamentally on its access to quality medical data – and lots of it. Collecting quality medical data however continues to present a real challenge for many companies working on harnessing AI technology for good.

Powering AI technology is challenging

Collecting quality medical data is time-consuming. “From my experience, 30 to 50% of time needed to develop an AI system is spent collecting quality data,” shared Swiss Supercomputing AG software engineer Susanne Suter. Furthermore, medical data in most countries continue to be siloed in disconnected systems that are difficult to access. In some cases, this data still resides in handwritten records stored in file cabinets in the doctor’s office. As expressed in Forbes, “Data must flow freely through AI systems to achieve real results but extracting data from handwritten patient files or PDFs is cumbersome for us, and difficult for AI.”

Successful collaboration by experts from fields including medicine and data science is also necessary in developing useful AI systems in healthcare. In a project with Dr. med. Peter Maloca from the Institute of Molecular and Clinical Ophthalmology Basel (IOB), Susanne’s team is developing automated analysis systems that can detect retinal tissues and medical conditions such as tumors in eyes. The team used over 2,000 images taken from an estimated sample of 650 different eyes. Each image had to be marked by experts, i.e. the retinal tissues are drawn on each image, before this data was fed to AI systems as part of the machine-learning process.

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Additionally, companies developing AI solutions for healthcare have to actively consider issues related to cybersecurity and data protection. For AI systems that need to be connected to the internet to make use of powerful cloud-based backends, sufficient cybersecurity needs to be put in place to protect it against hacking. Because AI systems depend on the integrity of large medical data sets to be effective, sufficient measures also need to be put in place to ensure that medical data (e.g. from databases maintained by hospitals and other medical institutions) remain protected.

What’s next

The potential AI in technology has in transforming how we receive medical care continues to grow. However, much of this progress still depends on the speed at which the healthcare industry successfully undergoes digital transformation. Additionally, as its success hinges on its access to a high quantity of medical data, questions remain about how the development of AI technology in healthcare will benefit from current efforts to return data ownership to the people – efforts that thereby free medical data previously siloed in medical institutions and restricted by data consent laws, back in the control of people who can consent their transaction.

“AI will ultimately help us in decision-making, but we are still quite far from a reality where machines can think and draw their own conclusions. And in thinking about how to collect quality data, it’s important to remember, the person who owns the data has the power,” concluded Susanne.

The future of AI in healthcare looks bright, and it will surely be an exciting area of healthcare innovation to watch over the next few years.

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Susanne Suter, Dr. sc. Computer Science University of Zurich, has been successfully involved for over 15 years in multidisciplinary innovative projects at the interface between computer science, biology and medicine (including scientific prizes, third-party funds and publications). Since four years, she is working for Super Computing Systems as a software project leader and engineer producing custom-tailored medical software systems such as a patient monitoring system at a neuro-intensive care unit, second-opinion case-review systems for medical doctors, and an automated surveillance service to track the health condition in human eyes.

About the author

Aisha Schnellmann is a Singaporean sociologist by training, interested in healthcare, education, and sustainability issues. She is passionate about producing content that promotes meaningful dialogue, focusing on print and digital content that resonates with a strong call-to-action. Based in Zurich, her interest in digital healthcare grew from the conversations she had with committed medical staff in rural hospitals in Asia, who remain hard-pressed with the technology available to them.

For more information about the next “Women in Digital Health” events

Again, we are looking at a promising start-up, which uses blockchain technology to develop a platform in healthcare, called “Sunny Lake”, based in beautiful Paris. It is built with the Ethereum blockchain and aims to offer an exchange platform for different stakeholders in the healthcare system like patients, physicians, researchers or laboratories. Their goal is to provide a toolkit, data and experts in order to conduct health and life science studies, in an efficient and effective way. What the benefits for patients/users are and why Sunny Lake is not a typical start-up, Jean-Christophe Despres (President and Co-founder) shared with us in an interview.

By Tram Trinh and Sunjoy Mathieu

Jean-Christophe, you are a French globetrotter and serial entrepreneur in the marketing field. Why did you decide to enable clinical studies with an emerging technology like blockchain ? Can you tell us more about you?

Jean-Christophe Despres: My entrepreneurial journey started back in the mid 90’s working on online communities. I later created the first ethnic marketing agency in France where I had to deal with public health campaigns targeting migrants. Once again, I’ve used a community-based approach. Later on, I’ve participated in a think tank, Club Jade, which launched those amazing projects on Big Data and Cancer, and an open source portable echograph. They happened to start from my office at the time and I had many opportunities to see the power of their growing communities. Talking with patients especially experts dealing with chronic diseases convinced me that a health community using blockchain technology would address major challenges in health and life science studies such as transparency and data privacy.

What is your Sunny Lake product?

Sunny Lake is an e-health platform based on Ethereum blockchain on which patients, physicians, researchers and labs can collect, share data and therefore build and test future health and life science studies in an accelerated mode.

This platform should become the meeting place for sharing between patients, physicians, research and lab organizations where everyone can find at an affordable and controllable cost, the tools, the data, the experts and the communities necessary to finalize the first steps of such studies. Our initial version of the Sunny Lake has just been launched and now we are developing an enhanced version, expected to go live in June 2018.

You mentioned Etherum is underlying your blockchain. Why select this one, since there are several other existing blockchain technologies?

Ethereum was designed to enable users to build smart contracts. Those contracts are algorithms which enable stakeholders to exchange data or counterparts, commonly referred to as tokens, in a secured and simple way. As our ecosystem involves many interactions with different entities (pharmaceutical companies or public labs) or individuals (experts or patients), we think that Ethereum is a fundamental layer for future applications. In addition, as a platform, we wanted to work on a public blockchain.

We understand that the benefits for patients and for the medical is a trustworthy reliable and traceable universe of questionnaire protocols, data and consent that can accelerate medical research findings. Is our perception correct?

With blockchain, there’s already a feature which is not questioned much, it’s timestamping. Bitcoin is running for many years with not a single fraud or bug on that matter. We are therefore quite confident with our business proposal regarding informed consent for instance. But there is more to it which is as important maybe as the internet revolution: the tokenization of our economy. This simply means that everybody in a community should be entitled to be rewarded for their participation through a common process. For Sunny Lake that means that there will be strong incentives for sharing data. We expect to receive massive feedback from patients not only because they will be rewarded but most of all because they will be able to measure up their own impact on research.

How do you envision the speed to adoption as everybody relies on trust and for the time being your direct customer is a business organisation, that will then reach out to the end user patient/consumers?

Well, this is why we are not a startup like others, always rushing. We need to build our own circle of trust, explain the impact of technology on business and change habits, participate in creating new standards. As long as we are moving forward, implementing our technology step by step, it’s ok. We can perfectly understand that the industry is watching us with interest and doubts. Hopefully, there are some pioneers and we are glad to receive more and more trust. Meanwhile, patients are eager to see this new age coming. It going to take a couple of years but we think it will bea fundamental change.

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It seems trust is a non-negotiable condition to impact a scaleable volume of questionnaires and consents not only in France but also globally?

The only issue is of a legal nature and it’s barely affecting us for what we are doing at the moment. For other matters, technology doesn’t care about borders. People suffering from rare diseases are already used to communicating with each other worldwide. What we want is us to have a greater voice and empowering them to initiate new research.

Jean-Christophe Despres, President & Co-Founder of Sunny Lake

What is the profile of companies using Sunny Lake? And why in your opinion do they trust you as all is based on Ethereum technology that other blockchain solutions could use?

Many pharmaceutical companies now understand they need a new deal with patients. It’s not always in their corporate culture and sometimes difficult in their highly regulated environment but they are eager to participate in trustworthy protocols. One of our client has challenged us because they didn’t want to have any record of patients public keys. It helped us a lot in designing the platform. If a company wants to use blockchain as a process, it doesn’t require Ethereum and we did that too. But most of them value this concept of community where a public blockchain makes full sense.

What are the concrete use cases you have been working on and was is the outlook for Sunny Lake?

Some real life science studies in Switzerland with the goal to create a tool for online consent, transparent, reliable and traceable. Every patient in the study could download on a third-party website the pair of encryption keys they would use for their consent. They are the only owners and holders of the keys. In order to have real consent, design of the protocol, training through simple videos were key to ensure complete understanding of the study purpose. The main investigator of the clinical study and himself could only receive the consent form to sign himself through e-mail and get the signature notarized by the blockchain. A first of its kind in real-life conditions.

As next steps, we will even receive more reliable data thanks to a methodology of registry based on transparency and unfalsifiable protocol, hence a stronger engagement from patients who can control their data and their traceability and enrollment probability.

Also, we’re launching an Initial Coin Offering. It directly relates to what I’ve mentioned regarding the tokenization of economy. Concretely, issued tokens will not only be displayed only to Sunny Lake but also to strategic partners that will contribute to build an improved ecosystem of clinical research. Patients will benefit from it but it may also involve other start-ups as well as pharmaceutical companies.

In a nutshell, what’s your critical life mission?

Contrary to many projects, we are not a portal, nor a “DMP” (Patient Medical Record) but an actor and conductor of an ecosystem. Our mission is to contribute to the best flow of quality data serving the future medicine based on big data and artificial intelligence. We want to facilitate data interoperability by creating meta data standards and by systematically notarizing exchanged data on the blockchain.

Thank you, Jean-Christophe!

Learn more about Sunny Lake and their projects:

Do you want your own start-up to be featured in a blogpost? Take this chance and contact us today!

With the highly-valued support from your business partner, Tram Trinh (CEO VITAnLINK, A Health Tech Accelerator in Paris), we have the chance to look over the Swiss start-up border and follow some international companies who are engaged in the area of healthcare and the opportunities the blockchain technology can offer in this field, as a benefit for people and patients.

I’m proud that we can provide our HEALTHINAR followers with a glimpse of the exciting times and dynamic team spirit of Iryo, a very promising start-up. With a patient-driven approach, they are developing an open-sourced EHR platform, that gives patients, hospitals, and medical research institutions complete control over their healthcare data. Their goal is to create a global and participatory healthcare ecosystem, based on the values of data security, maximum interoperability, and privacy.

Enjoy this week’s read, an interview with Vasja Bočko, (CEO Iryo) and Tjaša Zajc (Business developer and Communications Manager, Iryo).

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“We take best practices learned in developed countries and bring it to the developing ones” – or: How Iryo is creating a global participatory healthcare ecosystem

Being from the world of IT, what urged you to tackle the highly regulated healthcare sector coming from the advanced IT world?

Tjaša: Compared to other industries, IT in healthcare is years behind in offering healthcare providers and patients a good user experience. Most IT providers provide vendor lock-in systems, making the exchange of data and interoperability extremely difficult. We are creating a system that is built on a standard that can increase interoperability (openEHR). Moreover, Iryo will be open-sourced, making sure there that vendor lock-in is non-existent. Blockchain adds a layer of transparency and immutability that will make the system more secure and trustworthy.

And so, why do you believe that Iryo will be able to outperform the big players in this space?

Vasja: I would say they all are facing the innovator’s dilemma, in reference to the book of The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail by Clayton M. Christensen. Because these traditional players have always been successful in existing models, they can’t get out of this legacy mode easily and quickly.

The markets we believe we can have the fastest impact on are developing markets such as Africa and/or parts of the Middle East, where the markets and regulations are less developed, leaving space for new players.

How does Iryo turn this vision into reality?

Tjaša: We are currently working with a non-profit organization called, Walk with me, that is active in refugee camps in the Middle East. It was introduced to us by one of our advisors, Brian de Francesca. Facing a severe lack of resources, most needs are tended to before an EMR system in a refugee camp. On the other hand, patients with chronic conditions tend to spend many years in these camps. Offering a system, in which they will be able to have their medical data stored on their smartphones is a step forward to improving their continued care. When they leave a refugee camp, they will be able to take all their medical data with them. Blockchain technology will be the primary solution enabling them to become the decision makers around their data. They will be able to grant or revoke access to their medical records based on their needs.

Vasja: Refugees have minimal resources, but one thing that holds a significant amount of to them is their smartphones and having internet access. The turn over of healthcare professionals in refugee camps is high, as they come through various NGOs. We are building an IT system that will be user-friendly for healthcare professionals and patients alike, consequently helping with the accuracy of medical records.

Given the number of refugees, and the capacity of smartphones, how can they store all this data?

Vasja: Big files such as imagining diagnostics results, will not be stored on the phone directly. Iryo provides a cloud-based platform that can store the additional data from the patients free of charge. The refugee project is our pilot project to prove the concept and eventually design a model for scaling to other places with similar challenges regarding connectivity and infrastructure.

What are your target segments and business model?

Vasja: Our software will be available as a SaaS freemium service. If a healthcare provider has IT capabilities for maintenance, they can use it as such or pay us to service them. Additional revenue streams will be local customization, tailor-made solutions. The most prominent potential we see is for Iryo to become the global platform for researchers who would have to pay for the access to patient records by incentivizing patients to open their medical files in exchange for Iryo tokens.

What is your unique message that you would like to send to entrepreneurs, investors, healthcare providers, researchers, here and today?

Tjaša: We will need to ramp up our development team in the near future in order to further develop a robust and reliable product.

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The core Iryo team with some of the advisors

What tenacity and long-term commitment! What drives you guys?

Vasja: We have all worked in IT which generally benefits from quick progress. A few of us initially worked in healthcare which is where we observed the inefficiencies concerning IT infrastructure across the board. The gap is massive, and unacceptable in this day and age. We want to bring the best practices and approach in IT to the healthcare world.

Tjaša: My personal interest in healthcare derives from being a chronic patient for more than 15 years now. As a former healthcare journalist, I follow closely where healthcare system inefficiencies are and what solutions could address them. We want to be the catalyst for change.

So this is what makes you wake up every day?

Tjaša: Yes, striving to create a meaningful social impact.

Kind of a Robin the Hood in healthcare?

Tjaša: I wouldn’t quite say Robin Hood as that would mean we would have to steal from the rich to give to the poor, but yes we attempt to take best practices learned in developed countries and bring them to the developing ones.

Learn more about Iryo and their projects:

The HEALTHINAR workshop day “Digital Healthcare” on 18 September 2015 was packed with inspirational input and interesting discussions. Even though it is hard to pick the highlights we have chosen 8 astonishing insights which we would like to share with you:

We are living in a science fiction movie.

Whether it’s the tricoder from start trek, the miniature submarine from Fantastic Voyage or even cyborgs – what used to be the fantasy of science fiction authors is reality today.  Kamales Lardi used these allegories to take us into the fast evolving world of medical technology and digital transformation. And the pace which with technology is moving today is getting even faster. So just imagine what kinds of developments we are looking forward to.

A heart is a heart is a heart. Or is it?

Think about the image of a heart. What do you see? An icon, an illustration or a photo? In her engaging workshop, Esther Stüdli used this example to create awareness for the professional use and variety of visual communication elements. The exercise also sharpened the participants’ perception of which level of abstraction might be appropriate for a certain message or target group.

Image by Esther Stüdli

The experience of waiting goes way beyond counting minutes.

Social time and mechanically measured time are two different concepts. When improving the waiting situation, e.g. in a hospital, it is important to take both aspects into consideration. Beatrice Kaufmann is part of the interdisciplinary research group “Health Care Communication Design” at Bern University of the Arts (HKB). She shared some of the amazing insights from the project “Waiting Times”, an experiment which was conducted as a holistic intervention, taking into account visual, acoustic, tactile and olfactory elements. It resulted in a measurable effect of the influence of artistic redesign of interior spaces on the individual experience of waiting.

Sitting is the new smoking.

A truly shocking fact presented by Manuel Heuer, coo at dacadoo, is that more people die because of too less exercise (mostly from cardiovascular diseases) than from the consequences of smoking. There are estimations that 65% of health care costs in Europe could be avoided by a change of behavior.

Social Media is a lot more than a marketing channel.

While marketing is an obvious choice for the use of social media channels, there are numerous other ways and objectives to utilize these platforms. Social media is pretty much any “conversation that people have online” – as Kamales Lardi explained to the audience.

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Co-working is the future.

Thomas Kupferschmied showed in his introduction how digitalisation has changed our society, the way we work and how we communicate with each other. Working independently from time and space provides new freedom and the easy exchange with colleagues and clients can simplify processes. The discussion among participants showed that this vision is already reality for many and that the right tools and strategies to manage a digital work environment will become even more relevant in the future.

Software companies rule the world.

The world’s biggest library? Amazon. The world’s biggest taxi service? Uber. The world’s biggest marketing company? Google.  Manuel Heuer used these examples to demonstrate how far digitization has already influenced various industries and our everyday life. He claims that it is only a matter of time until this kind of digital revolution also sweeps over the healthcare sector in Switzerland. So grab the opportunity, become part of the change and shape the future!

Kupfi is now on WhatsApp.

It came as a shock to many but it really is true: Thomas Kupferschmied is now on WhatsApp! To see which other apps, programs and channels he uses to stay in touch with people and to organize his digital work environment, have a look at the last pages of his slides.

Participants of the workshop can download or request the slides of all speakers here.

And what where your highlights of our workshop day? Or what should be a topic at a next HEALTHINAR event?

Esther Stüdli will present the workshop “Denn Sie wissen was Sie tun.” at the HEALTHINAR event on 18 September 2015.

Read Esther Stüdli’s portrait in German.

With over ten years of experience, Esther Stüdli has a vast knowledge of design. She studied at ZHdK (Zurich University of the Arts) and has been working for numerous agencies and companies since 2002. She was founder and manager at gut&schön agency and with her own agency Stern-Design she now consults clients from various industries, develops creative design concepts and realizes projects of visual communications – always following the principal of professional integration of content and form. Her work has been awarded with the reddot design award.

The focus of her workshop session is on visual communication and intervention in healthcare. The goal of this workshop is to sharpen the perception and to create awareness for professional use of visual communication elements which stimulate all the senses. During the two-hour session, we will develop extensive theoretical knowledge and also test the possibilities of practical application of various concepts and techniques. As a special highlight, the workshop features a guest speaker from the design research department at Bern University of the Arts (HKB) who will give us some input on HCCD – Health Care Communication Design.

-> Get your ticket now, and learn all about visual communications in Esther Stüdli’s workshop.

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Manuel Heuer will present the workshop “Medical Apps: Thread or Opportunity?” at the HEALTHINAR event on 18 September 2015.

Manuel Heuer combines 20 years of international business experience in the cardiovascular medical device industry and the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) industry in Brazil, Belgium, France and Switzerland. In November 2011 he joined dacadoo where he is now responsible for product development, service operation, marketing and sales.

Interview mit Manuel Heuer auf Deutsch.

Mr. Heuer, there is a real hype around medical- and wellness apps at the moment. What is your opinion on the development of this trend?

First of all, it is important to differ between medical- and wellness apps: While medical apps are a medical product and therefore need to be approved by several institutions (FDA, CE-Mark), wellness apps do not need to go through such a process.

Right now, there are numerous fitness and wellness apps in the various app stores and many of them are cost-free offers. That causes two difficulties: It is becoming increasingly challenging for a user to find and to choose the right app, and on the other hand the companies are struggling with a very low „willingness to pay“. Recent market data also shows that about 90% of all apps installed are not being used any more only one week after the purchase. As a result, app developers appear and disappear very quickly in the market.

However, there are still relatively few apps that are able to display health in a holistic way, which means that we currently do not have a great number of competitors in the European market. The number of existing apps in the app stores also doesn’t really matter to dacadoo, because we are following a B2B go to market strategy.

I believe that in the future, people will have at least one or two apps which fit their need to track and evaluate their health and lifestyle.

Could you please give us a taste of what your workshop session on 18 September will be about?

The workshop will discuss threads and opportunities of medical and wellness-apps. Besides reviewing some fascinating developments within the digital healthcare sector, I will provide insights into the work of app developer dacadoo and discuss some challenges which we are currently facing. An interactive group work session about go-to-market strategies will be the hands-on aspect of this workshop.

Who is the target group of your session – which people should make sure not to miss it?

There is no strictly defined target group. Everyone who’s interested in the topic is welcome to join.

What can people expect to gain from participating in your workshop?

They will be able to gain detailed insights into the digitalisation of the healthcare market and also get the rare opportunity to look behind the scenes of a player who has been in this market since 2011.

-> Get your ticket now, and learn all about medical apps in Manuel Heuer’s workshop.

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From the 27th until the 30th July, HEALTHINAR not only did some business-scouting in Tel Aviv but was also a part of the “Global Entrepreneurs” panel at the mHealth Israel conference. We encountered various promising startup-companies (as Israel really is THE startup-country). If you are interested why, this book is our recommendation.

Below a small selection of interesting startup-projects we ecountered and are starting to cooperate:

  • GeneWay: A very unique project about “Genetic Wellness”, see also this interesting article about it.
  • Night-Sense: “Provides a non invasive real time alert of life threatening sleep hypoglycemia events” and hence improves the life of people with diabetes.
  • LB Sight: It’s about hand hygiene, trying to reduce hospital infections. The specialty: they don’t focus on hand hygiene but on the problematic of the touch which has been neglected so far.
  • Heartin: Checking your heart remotely
  • Medasense: Pain monitoring in the hospital

Our huge thanks also go to Tram Nguyen-Trinh and Levi Shapiro, the organizer of mHealth Israel. They made the conference a big success and helped us to have an unforgettable Israel experience. It was very impressive and we hope to be back soon with HEALTHINAR.

Take a look at HEALTHINAR’s trip to Barcelona and taking part in the Health 2.0 conference in Barcelona: Watch the story here.

The Health 2.0 conferences really are the place to be if you are interested in patient-provider communication, consumer health, data analytics and healthcare tech. All this was shown in exciting panels and more than 50 demos. Some interesting examples were:

– iRCP: http://bit.ly/1dh3GZw

– Hospital Simulation by Attensi: http://www.attensi.com/

– Simplifying diagnostics my MESI: http://www.mesimedical.com/homepage/

– Sense.ly with their virtual nurse Molly: http://sense.ly/

– The mobile wound management tool Wounddesk: http://wounddesk.com/

And of course we were also very impressed by the Jessica Feder, Chief Digital Officer at Bayer and the Grants4Apps Accelerator-Programme, check it our here: https://www.grants4apps.com/accelerator/

However, they were many more impressive demos and panels, we would like to thank them and of course to the awesome organisation of Health 2.0. See you all next year the latest!