There are many truths about technology innovation, but a big one is that sometimes there is no need to reinvent the wheel.
When you spend hours every week reading and writing about mobile healthcare--interviewing top minds and innovators--it's hard to fathom a scenario in which these tools are not taking root in the industry ubiquitously.
But after recently spending 17 hours in the emergency room of one of the best hospitals in New York, I quickly realize that mHealth technology is still in a very young stage when it comes to day-to-day healthcare delivery.
Conventional wisdom, especially when it comes to technology, is that more is better--more participants drive competition; more innovation drives more products; more advancements foster better tools and systems. But that's not the case at all when it comes to mobile healthcare apps.
There is a strong tendency for most Americans to think the bureaucratic process often gets in the way of federal agencies undertaking innovative programs and strategies. It's typically an inherent belief for many of us given the stumbles federal agencies often make and the headlines those missteps generate, with good news often relegated to back pages. But that shouldn't be the case when it comes to the progress the U.S. military departments have made with mobile health technology--and how they are using the tools to help active service personnel and injured soldiers.
There are many reasons mobile healthcare is being propelled forward. Smartphone advancements are laying a strong foundation for healthcare device development; app makers are innovating on monitoring; and tracking software and providers are piloting new tools at their facilities.
These all make for good headlines, but one trend that often doesn't get as much attention is the collaborative trifecta: when tech vendors, platform builders and providers all are part of an effort.
Google (er, Alphabet), for too long, has been this slightly sleepy lumbering giant within the health industry--sometimes moving closer to the center to spur innovation and then just as quickly, stepping silently away to sit quietly on the perimeter as other notable players remain in constant proximity to the heart of advancements.
There clearly is no limit on the potential of mobile healthcare technology. If someone told me 10 years ago that a smartphone could be used to track one's health, I likely would have responded with a measure of disbelief, especially considering the associated security risks.
Congress has been a bit slow in getting up to speed on IoT, data security and privacy worries, and even slower on working to keep mHealth technology and Internet innovation advancing while solving hurdles stalling such innovation.