Technology and Keeping Up with Your Health

Advanced technology, making things more efficient and convenient, has permeated all aspects of our lives including our health; and some of those technological innovations that help us work toward maintaining optimal health are absolutely incredible!

One of the very beneficial advancements in healthcare technology is mobile health, also known as Mhealth. Mhealth, which initially began as physician appointments taking place through a mobile connection such as Facetime via a cellphone or a computer, proved invaluable – a virtual lifeline – for those without access to bricks and mortar hospitals or doctor’s offices. Mhealth also served as an important health practice during some of the worst parts of the pandemic – when it was better for people (especially those with compromised health) not to venture out. 

However, even as those initial aspects of Mhealth have quickly become more commonplace, Mhealth has made further advancements in a short amount of time, resulting in additional, even more beneficial healthcare technology trends such as real-time health tracking. Real-time health tracking not only keeps patients and doctors abreast of blood pressure, heart-rate and more in real-time, it can track that information with a high degree of accuracy, compare it with current health standards and even provide medical advice for improvement and treatment.

One example of a novel approach to real-time health tracking is a watch, made by Apple, which can monitor a person’s vitals, as well as provide important health reminders, such as when to hydrate and when blood sugar levels should be addressed. It can also count calories and even help create manageable health goals so that wearers can begin to adopt healthier habits and make better lifestyle choices. A similar device is the Fitbit wearable technology, which can remind its wearer of things like when it is a good idea to get up and move around and when you should practice deep breathing exercises, etc….also all in an effort to maintain optimal health.

There is also a wide array of medical alert tracking devices available that can pinpoint a person’s location and can dispatch help 24 hours a day. Some medical alert devices are programmed for larger ranges to accommodate big houses and unlimited access across the country, some can detect dangers such as fire, smoke and carbon monoxide, some can expose intruders and others provide the ability to speak with board certified doctors. They can come in the form of a wristband or necklace and most no longer rely on previously required landline connections for operation.

In fact, there are currently so many technological gadgets designed to promote health and safety that people can now enjoy the luxury of picking and choosing to custom-tailor a monitoring program specific to their needs.

If a person suffers from stomach and digestive issues, there is a microbiome test which provides a tracking application and food recommendations based on findings. There is a finger-prick-free device for detecting low blood sugar; sleep quality and sleep cycle tracking to improve health; and heart monitors to alert us to cardiovascular issues and detect heart disease – one of the most frequent causes of death. All the user needs is a smartphone, smartwatch or other smart device to gain a higher level of personal health awareness, eliminate the need for various medical appointments and, in some cases, even avoid otherwise invasive medical procedures.

Additionally, the latest technological advances in health also allow us to take advantage of preventive care through DNA saliva tests which can check for health risks, potential vitamin deficiencies and metabolism issues, as well as food intolerance, a propensity for sports-related injuries and other athletic performance parameters.

There are also technological health innovations which use Internet applications to gather medical intelligence, including items such as body temperature monitors, as well as inner sole pressure sensors and step trackers to monitor gate and movement.

Breathing monitors, for the purpose of differentiating between normal sleep patterns and those which may pose a potential health risk, are available for infants (developed to address concerns associated with sudden infant death syndrome) and adults for sleep apnea and other potential breathing issues during waking hours. These breathing trackers provide alerts when there are lengthy pauses. They can also track oxygen levels to ensure that they remain acceptable.

Then there are enormous databases that have been developed and are constantly evolving, some of which can detect health trends, create health statistics and make health predictions. Others still enable medical professionals to network and access all sorts of helpful patient information, such as previous diagnoses, treatments and medications prescribed – all of which help more accurately develop and facilitate an effective plan of care.

Right about now you may be thinking, “What if that data is incorrectly recorded or gets into the wrong hands?” Glad you asked because there is even a technological advancement in healthcare that protects against those potential hazards – something called Blockchain. Blockchain helps secure and defend the procurement and transportation of this type of data.

Artificial intelligence (AI) also plays a vital role in healthcare technological advancements, increasing functionality through analytics. Additionally, augmented reality – which takes virtual reality to another level – makes it possible to do things like enable doctors to inspect the body’s various organs and systems when a patient simply places their smartphone on a particular part of their body.

Medical technological advances, such as remote monitoring, doctor and other medical professional appointments, as well as data collection, are also used for clinical trials – where even more technological advancements in health are made. Clinical research and the findings that are uncovered within the clinical trial process are vital to advancement of medicine and essential for discovering better ways to prevent, treat, control and diagnose illnesses.

Velocity Clinical Research, conveniently located in the beachside town of Edgewater, Florida and offering the capacity to support up to 26 in-house patients and a large number of outpatients, is one of the facilities wholly dedicated to making continual advancements in healthcare.