digital health

Emerging technologies, innovative software and medical devices are revolutionising the healthcare industry. Decentralising clinical trial data is helping to unlock the full potential these tools by enabling people in different places to work securely on data without compromising patient privacy . One of the areas that I find most exciting is the use of predictive modelling and artificial intelligence in federated machine learning – a way to learn from data without removing it from the location where it is stored. This takes us beyond the current established concept of federated databases. By combining several new technologies, we can not only have distributed data – but also distributed 'data fictionalisation' (i.e. the learning from data). This enables owner control of the data during learning. In practice, this disruptive approach ensures that the study is built around the patient, rather than a centralized trial site. It unleashes new ways to use data, transforming how scientists conduct R&D in the discovery and management of various diseases. This new patient-centred approach means data can be collected anywhere – at a hospital or research centre, or from the patient's home using telemedicine tools. This produces data that is far more representative of a patient's real-world activities during their participation in a clinical study. Building clinical trials around patients in their homes and in the community through remote visits and monitoring, enhances recruitment and increases convenience for participants. The implementation of this decentralised research approach is well accepted by patients, offering measurable benefits. It means fewer site visits, making trial participation less daunting. Today's remote advanced technologies have provided many opportunities for healthcare organizations to enhance the overall care experience, improve the health of populations and reduce per capita healthcare costs, globally. As a result, we have seen readmissions among congestive heart failure (CHF) patients in...
We live at a time when there is more information about health than ever before. And in this digital age there are more smartphones than doctors per person in Europe. Health information is out there in droves, and it is conveniently accessible online 24 hours a day. But can citizens find , understand , assess and apply health information to improve their health outcomes? According to the European Health Literacy Survey published in 2015, not quite. And there are disparities within and between member states. The survey found that 26.9% of respondents in Bulgaria report inadequate levels of health literacy, versus 1.8% in the Netherlands. Health literacy, defined as an ability to find, understand, critically appraise and successfully apply health information in order to improve one’s well-being, is a key determinant of health. Research has shown that individuals with lower health literacy are less knowledgeable about diseases. They also adhere less to preventative measures and have higher hospitalisation rates . If you're like us, you've probably asked your search engine more questions about your health than to your healthcare provider. But how accurate is this information? Did the reader understand the complex medical language? One exciting avenue to improve health literacy is to provide a framework for the digital communication of health information. By mitigating the dissemination of inaccurate health information online and by improving the user-friendliness of online resources, citizens will be able to navigate the jungle of health information, understand important health topics, and be equipped to play an active role in their own health and in their local healthcare system. The ubiquity, adaptability and affordability of digital tools to improve health literacy is very appealing, but support is needed to reduce barriers to their use. Like many new tools, digital media come with benefits and limitations. Using...