Lifescience innovations5

13 years ago a lot of people were walking around with the Nokia 3310, an innovative model at the time. 9 years ago the first iPhone was released, another widely popular innovation. Currently more than 2 billion people around the world have a smartphone and you can buy the 11th version of the iPhone. Not just the mobile phone has changed in just a few years, the popularity of lifestyle technology focused on health is growing rapidly as well. More and more products like activity trackers, smartwatches, and other wearables are being developed.


A fast growing market segment is consumer-eHealth, meaning medical experts are not necessarily involved[1]. Many of these products measure behaviour and provide feedback to the user. The question is whether the fast developing lifestyle market will influence development in healthcare as well? Medical grade eHealth applications are increasingly used, although adoption by medical experts is sometimes still a challenge. The opportunities of eHealth are widely researched and recognised: treatment can be improved due to the available data, costs can be reduced, people can manage their health more efficiently, and can live independently at home.


There is another challenge in the adoptions of eHealth: people are concerned their privacy is not guaranteed. Devices connected through the internet always have a liability, they can be hacked. Another challenge is in the design of the applications; everyone should be able to use the interactive products. However, research shows that in 2017 half of the people in the US of 65 and older will use a smartphone[2]. More research shows 61 percent of the people older than 55 years old are open to using mobile devices for their health[3]. This indicates readiness and early adoption on the consumer side. These developments in the lifestyle market indicate opportunities for the healthcare market.


Lifescience technology in healthcare

Behavioural interpretations of consumer eHealth applications provide support in achieving healthier habits. Medical experts could also interpret the data (if up to certain standards), observe relative changes, and use this information to support decisions in the provided care. Medical experts are starting to explore the possibility of using consumer eHealth data as health and behaviour indicators. One example is the use of FitBit data by doctors in New Jersey, which lead them to shock a patients’ heart[4]. Onmi is currently working on the Do CHANGE project. In this project medical eHealth applications are supported by consumer eHealth applications to create a better understanding of the patients lifestyle and risk factors. The patients are able to monitor their health outcomes while getting extra support in adopting healthy habits. Behavioural prompts, or Do’s, help the patient break old habits and learn healthy new ones, all with the supervision of a medical expert.



Kim 25-10-2016




[1] Raad voor de Volksgezondheid & Zorg. 2015. Consumenten eHealth. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 25 October 2016].

[2] Axial Exchange. 2014. Do older Americans use smartphones?. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 25 October 2016].

[3] Telecompaper, 2015; Ouderen nieuwsgierig naar ehealth, connectiviteit belangrijk. [ONLINE]–1077427 [Accessed 25 October 2016]

[4] S. Dent, 2016; Fitbit data led doctors to shock a patient’s heart. [ONLINE] [Accessed 25 October 2016]

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