Healthcare brands are now inseparable from their ability to connect with their customer. And customers are ready to be connected. In the next five years, it’s estimated that more than 50 billion devices will be wirelessly connected as part of The Internet of Things (IoT). By 2019, 69% of consumers say they plan to buy a connected home IoT device. And by the end of this year, 28% of consumers will own a wearable healthcare device such as a fitness band or smartwatch. The Internet of Healthcare Things is expected to be more than a third of this multitrillion-dollar transformational technology explosion.
Whether wearable, digestible, sensor or robotic, digitally connected health and the monitored, quantified-self has captured the imagination of health care professionals and consumers alike. We’re seeing a collision between technology, science, device, and consumerism. The connected healthcare journey is underway!
Connected health means communication between patients and the financiers and providers of care is a personalized, interactive value exchange. Winning health companies will leverage connected technology to support their customers in the quest of an individual’s ownership of their health care. They will adopt and use innovation to be more empowered, making it easier to:
- Self-diagnose a condition or symptom
- Change a health habit or behavior to reach a goal
- Enable compliance with a course of treatment
- Interact with their community of care providers
- Holistically facilitate a healthier lifestyle
Digitally connected self-service is being driven by convenience-based commercial experiences outside the healthcare sector. It’s now assumed that any desired information or service is available on any device at a person’s moment of need. Always-on, anytime/anywhere healthcare customers will emerge as more informed, smarter consumers. They will push companies to deliver measurable value from their health interactions with an expectation of better care, better outcomes and better quality of life.
How do health companies pursue the new reality of connected health?
- PLAN ACCORDINGLY With 79% of companies ranking innovation as one of their top 3 priorities, establish a connected health business strategy linked to core mission, enterprise growth and profitability goals, resource bandwidth, and defined customer needs.
- HAVE PURPOSE With more than 165,000 mobile health apps flooding the market, avoid “crapplications”…have connected digital purpose: monitor, track, inform, instruct, record, display, guide, remind or communicate.
- INVEST WISELY With $4.5B in venture funding for digital health last year, it’s critical to formalize evidence and metric-based connected health business cases around usability, ROI, and consumer experience to manage internal strategy and vet external partners.
More than half of Americans say they are willing to monitor their health with connected devices that automatically send information to their doctors or caregivers. And, smart clinicians get it; they’re convinced that health applications encourage patients to take more personal responsibility for their health. In fact, doctors are now prescribing apps for specific conditions. As health companies navigate the complex network of the Internet of Healthcare Things, the guiding rule of thumb is to move toward a connected consumer-centric financing and care delivery system built on wellness and prevention rather than sickness and illness.