Key Factors that Impact Connected Health Industry - Insights from ViKi Health AI

by Parks Associates | Aug. 20, 2019

Prior to Parks Associates' sixth annual Connected Health Summit: Independent Living and Wellness, Dev Singh, CEO of ViKi Health AI, shared his insights on the connected health market with the firm's analyst team.

What features of wellness and fitness apps are in highest use? Which are in highest demand?

Health and fitness applications can be divided into following categories:

  • Fitness Tracking, data storage and management- for tracking and storing workout information
  • Nutrition and diet guide- assist in weight loss by counting calories consumed and burned, controlling water balance and encouraging healthy eating habits
  • Fitness activity- keep track of movements and exercises
  • Medical and general health companion- for niche markets such as users who are suffering from illness such as heart ailments, blood pressure, and diabetes etc. they perform activities such as giving alerts for medication time or sending a warning when any activity is leading to rising blood pressure or sugar levels. 
  • Emergency Alert devices that can alert the authorities based on pre-programmed thresholds

What is driving early consumer use of telehealth/ virtual visit services? What factors most impact the experience?

In the digital age, patients are taking a very serious look at how such wearables and other connected devices can positively impact their health. So, the consumer behavior is being driven not only due to the push effect of the providers but also the pull effect created by themselves.

However, there are several other factors that may impact the telehealth experience negatively:

  • Patient and physical attitude towards telemedicine regarding its effectiveness, safety and privacy as compared to traditional methods of care
  • Quality of internet connection
  • Compensation concerns may discourage some physicians to use it
  • Socioeconomic factors also include poverty since people with low income will not be able to pay telemedicine costs if they are high and not available as a free service within a public program

What are unique ways that connected health and the smart home converging?

As healthcare delivery shifts from high-cost institutional care to lower-cost home care, the concept of home as a care setting expands significantly from the current nurse home visit model to a variety of new services. Among them, the opportunity to help consumers manage their chronic conditions has the most potential, provided these services are delivered properly. Connected sensors and wearables play a big role in aging-in-place solutions, and software capability, including front end UI and backend analytics engine, is equally important. Some areas where we can see the convergence:

  • Smart home platform
  • Sensor, Voice UI and AI
  • Technology for Care givers
  • Monitoring sleep through technology

How do you navigate thorny issues around data ownership, privacy/security with the need to assess and present data in an integrated way?

In developing medical Internet security and privacy systems, the following four requirements should be considered.

  • Data Integrity: Data integrity can be divided into four categories, namely, entity integrity, domain integrity, referential integrity, and user-defined integrity, which can be maintained by foreign keys, constraints, rules, and triggers.
  • Data Usability: Data usability is to ensure that data or data systems can be used by authorized users. Data corruption or data loss caused by unauthorized access also further destroys data usability.
  • Data Auditing:  Audit content generally includes users, cloud service providers, access, and operation records.
  • Patient Information Privacy: Patient information can be subdivided into two categories: general records and sensitive data. Sensitive data, which can also be called patient privacy, include mental status, sexual orientation, sexual functioning, infectious diseases, fertility status, drug addiction, genetic information, and identity information. We need to make sure that the sensitive data is not leaked to unauthorized users, or even if data is intercepted, the information expressed cannot be understood by unauthorized users.

Cloud services through their elasticity and facility to access shared resources and common infrastructure in a ubiquitous and pervasive manner facilitate a promising solution for efficient management of pervasive healthcare data.

  • Data Encryption: General data encryption can be implemented at three levels of communication: link encryption, node encryption, and end-to-end encryption
  • Access Control: Access control is the means by which a data system defines the identity of a user and the predefined policies which prevent access to resources by unauthorized users. There are various encryption methods applied in access control, including symmetric key encryption (SKE), asymmetric key encryption (AKE), and attribute-based encryption (ABE).
  • Trusted Third Party Auditing: Cloud servers are not fully trusted. The integrity and consistency of medical data stored in the cloud could be compromised if data corruption or even deletion happens without user’s permission. For security reasons, the data rules are typically specified by the user, so that the server provider does not have direct contact with the source data. In addition, the Trusted Third Party (TTP) with great reputation which provides the unbiased auditing results can be introduced properly, to enable the accountability of the cloud service providers and protect the legitimate benefits of the cloud users.
  • Data Search: For protecting data privacy, sensitive data has to be encrypted before outsourcing, which obsoletes traditional data utilization based on plaintext keyword search. The major methods for searchable encryption include searchable symmetric encryption (SSE) and public-key encryption with keyword search (PEKS).
  • Data Anonymization: deleting or encrypting personally identifiable information from a database.

Next: Uber Partners with American Logistics Company to Continue Expansion into Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Services
Previous: Factors That Impact The Telehealth/Virtual Experience - Insights from Reflexion Health


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