Connected Health

Designing Connected Health Products People Love

Uplift Cooperative recently attended the Partners Connected Health Conference in Boston's Seaport District.  Uplift attended the event as a sponsor and promoter,  and showed off some of our impressive technologies at our booth in the "Connected Health Pavilion".  We worked with our Uplift Cooperative partner, Cantina, to host a Design Thinking Workshop.  As a follow-up to the very successful workshop, where over 80 people attended, the authors of the Workshop have created a 2-part series blog post about "Designing Connected Health Products People Love".  We are pleased to be a partner of Cantina as part of Uplift and also pleased to present the first part of that series: Several years ago, the designer Jonathan Shariat wrote an arresting blog post entitled “How Bad UX Killed Jenny.” It’s a cautionary tale for anyone working at the intersection of technology and user experience.

It describes how a young patient recovering from an aggressive cancer treatment died in a hospital due to a lack of hydration. Although hydration was part of the recovery protocol, and despite the fact that the nurses on staff each had over ten years of experience, something went terribly wrong. How did they miss this critical information when the charting software was developed precisely to ensure that each step in treatment was taken and properly recorded?

... to find out more about this revolutionary design thinking click here!

Make sure to follow us for part two of this 2-part series.

Key Trends in Connected Health: Emerging Technologies Will Make Our Lives Better

By Sam Margolis, Cantina & Mike Po, Bluefin Technology Partners - Members of Uplift Cooperative (https://www.upliftcoop.com/) The MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge recently hosted an event for professionals in the Connected Health space at the Broad Institute in Cambridge, MA. With a focus on emerging technologies that will improve patient care, over a hundred industry leaders and Doctors heard from seven companies that are on the front wave of transformation in health care. Here are some key takeaways central themes we see emerging in this space:

  • Tighten your seatbelts: The advances in connected product technologies for healthcare in the past few years have outpaced the development over the last 20.

Dr. Joseph Kvedar, Vice President of Connected Health, Partners HealthCare, presented the evolution of connected products for health and wellness. Dr. Kvedar has been involved in the industry for the past 20 years and now focuses the majority of the time working with Partners Healthcare to develop solutions for connected health.  

Dr. Kvedar sees the advancements in this area limited not by technology (as it was in the past) but by patient and doctor barriers. He noted that, “The solutions for connected health must be designed for usability by both the patient and the doctor” and went on to cite the three most important areas for consideration when designing connected products:

  1. Create frictionless User Interfaces

  2. Leverage proven engagement tools

  3. Design software and connected products that show empathy for their users

  • Less is more: Home health care technology will be most effective if it uses proven engagement tools.

Leveraging existing engagement tools such as the Amazon Alexa and other voice enabled home devices can be both a platform and springboard for innovation and improving patient care in the home.   Bill Rogers, CEO of Orbita (https://www.orbitahealth.com/) demonstrated his company's voice interaction system built on top of Amazon Echo.  Orbita Voice engages patients with user experiences that adapt to their needs, including intuitive, intelligent voice assistants based on Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant to inform, educate, and encourage.   

  • Inner and outer beauty are both important: Connected health care technology contains groundbreaking features - but nobody will use them without intuitive and engaging User Experiences.

Seven very promising technologies were showcased at the forum.   All have the potential to help make people’s lives significantly more healthy and fulfilling.  However, they were all in need of significant thought about how users will (or will not) ultimately adapt to and adopt the technologies.

In our experience as human interface experts and digital designers we have focused our companies on perfecting the human experience associated with mobile, web and custom applications.  This is a critically important element to accelerate and ensure the adoption of any new technology, especially as it relates to health care.

Senscio Technologies provides an AI platform to better manage and understand gaps in healthcare to improve health outcomes.

4)  Gateways could become the future for enabling the adoption of connected health products

The innovation happening with connected products is astounding, but in many cases highly specialized when it comes to patient care and well being.  This creates scenarios where patients may have to use many different products, applications, wearables in the same day to get a complete picture of their health and well being.  Simplifying the experience will help facilitate adoption.  To that end, the real winners in this space will figure out how to provide central gateways where multiple products can be managed and integrated giving the end user single point or application to manage many specialized products.  There remains great opportunity to address this key trend through superior integrations and experiences.

 

Uplift Cooperative: IoT and Health Combined

 The Internet of Things (IoT) has made its way to new, innovative, and upcoming industries such as: food and beverage, automobiles, and healthcare. The healthcare industry is the latest achievement in the IoT and Technology world.  The idea of IoT is to make fitness (and healthy lifestyle) more accessible for  any person that has the drive and can use a device as pervasive as a smartphone.

Health and wellness are vital concerns for everyone. The rising costs of care combined with an aging population and the need to focus on preventive care has put pressure on the  healthcare system. IoT is  becoming the middleman that is bringing users  new and innovative ways to be fit and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Internet of Things has improved healthcare in innovative ways. The idea of IoT is to bring healthcare and fitness to your fingertips. IoT is developing innovative products, apps, and programs to ease up the process and make healthcare more accessible and entertaining. Here are the latest  accomplishments of IoT in health:

  1. Connected Contact Lenses: Alcon (A Novartis Division) provides innovative products that enhance the quality of life by helping people see better. They have licensed Google’s smart lens technologies, which involves non-invasive sensors embedded within the contact lenses. Novartis is also hoping to develop a smart lens that will help those with presbyopia, helping to restore the eye’s focus.

  2. Ingestible Sensors: Proteus Digital Health Care is the first digital medical service in the world. PDH is comprised of ingestible sensors, a small-wearable patch , an application on a mobile device, and a provider portrait. The chief purpose of this technology is to monitor adherence to a medication schedule. The pill dissolves in the stomach and causes a small voltage that is then picked up by a sensor in the body, which again relays the data to a smartphone app.

  3. Depression Fighting Apps: Takeda Pharmaceuticals USA partnered with Cognition Kit Limited to make a specifically designed App that monitors and assesses cognitive function in patients with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD).

Now, in come Bluefin Technology Partners and Cantina that have joined forces to bring health and IoT together. This achievement is just the beginning for how IoT has entered the healthcare industry. Uplift Cooperative is elevating health and wellness with connected products.

Uplift Cooperative is the innovative tool that will bring users closer to their fitness and health care objectives. Uplift Cooperative is the partnership for all things IoT and health. The partnership will help companies create life-changing technology experiences for customers by bringing connected devices and services to market. Uplift brings complete solutions, including hardware, software, and experience design.  Do you have an IoT project you need help with? Bluefin Technology Partners helps companies build amazing connected solutions. We understand the complexity and collaboration required between organizational disciplines in order to deliver an IoT product to market on time and on budget.  We provide the services needed to assess your market, manage your partners, and shepherd your project through successful launch.

Bluefin Technology Partners and Cantina join forces to create “Uplift Cooperative” - helping health and wellness organizations leverage IoT to improve people’s lives

Worcester-based software development and IoT consulting firm Bluefin Technology Partners and Boston-based digital design and development agency Cantina announce the formation of a strategic partnership aimed at helping companies embrace emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) to improve people’s health and wellness. The move marks the first step in a broad strategic collaboration between the two companies that is focused on  the positive impact that IoT will have on people’s lives.  

Named for the feeling you get after increasing your happiness or health, Uplift Cooperative works exclusively with health and wellness organizations that are at the beginning of a connected product concept or are ready to go to market but are looking for a partner to help them execute. The partnership leverages each company's deep expertise in designing and building connected products and their understanding of the complexities of successfully launching them in today’s market.

“Uplift was created to deliver on our vision of helping companies develop a whole new class of connected devices that improves the health and wellness of the general public.  In doing so, we envision multiple devices working together in the context of connected health programs to keep individuals healthier and happier for life”, said Michael Po, Co-founder and general partner of Bluefin Technology Partners.Uplift’s decision to deliver connected products for  health and wellness is driven by the high market demand and industry trends that predict the significant impact that the Internet of Things will have in improving quality of life and making health data easier to manage and understand. Furthermore, Harel Kodesh, Vice President, Predix and CTO, GE Digital, at this year’s MIT Enterprise Forum’s ConnectedThings Conference, set the record straight on IoT-related health products by saying “after smart connected industrial applications, the smart health and wellness space is set to explode due its extremely high-reward and low-risk profile".

Bluefin Technology Partners and Cantina are award-winning companies with established histories of delivering high-quality and high-performing products.  In combining our resources and expertise, Uplift is ideally positioned to help our customers deliver impactful connected products to market.  As early leaders in IoT product development, we have already helped several companies deliver on their vision for innovative connected products and systems”,  said Matthew Chisolm, Co-founder and CEO of Cantina.

As the shift toward a more connected and intelligent world continues, the opportunity to transform lives through technology and innovation requires organizations to select a partner that can navigate the complexities of creating connected products and systems. Uplift is already helping companies design, build, and launch connected products for the American Kennel Club, PerkinElmer, Blustream, Acuity Brands, and others.

Uplift will support the growth of the IoT health ecosystem by offering a joint lab that facilitates concept development, early prototypes, and product testing as well as providing a place for teams to beta test the latest IoT technology and platforms. Organizations looking to learn more about Uplift Cooperative can visit www.upliftcoop.com or reach out to sales@upliftcoop.com or call 1-978-397-3100.

About Bluefin Technology Partners

Bluefin Technology Partners is a leading software development and IoT consulting firm based in Worcester, MA. Since 2013, Bluefin has collaborated with companies like IBM, Xively, Dragon Innovation, ASTRO, Smithwise and Connected Development to deliver apps to over 10 million customers. Bluefin specializes in IoT product development, including Product/Vendor Management, Product Ideation, Design Services, and Enterprise-Grade Technical Design.

About Cantina

Cantina is a digital design & development agency that ignites your great ideas and transforms them into digital products. Companies like Avid Technologies, MIT, Empower Retirement, and Zipcar trust Cantina to help them accelerate the path to innovation. Cantina’s services include Service Design, IoT User Experience, Mobile Product Development, Responsive Design and Development, and Enterprise-Grade Technical Design.