Trend: Managing chronic diseases remotely, with mobile tech

As we've reported on at length here in FierceHealthIT, vendors and providers are growing increasingly interested in methods for managing chronic diseases remotely. And the juggernaut continues to roll forward. While managing interoperability between devices and making users comfortable can each be a problem, as players are often deciding that a mobile (often cellphone)-based solution can do the best job of solving both.

One emerging technique for conducting such management is using mobile devices to collect and transmit key patient data from another device. This approach is getting endorsement from top mobile technology vendors, carriers and entrepreneurial companies creating specialized software and devices. It's also caught the attention of the government, in this case the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The agency is funding a $1.2 million study which will test a device designed to transfer data from diabetic patients' glucometers to cell phones and then, finally, to electronic health records. The device's developers include giants like Palm and Sprint, EMR leader Epic Systems and glucometer maker LifeScan.

Along the way, a host of smaller players are jumping into this business, with vendors like HealthPia America, BeWell Mobile Technology and MedApps. These vendors aren't just at the talking stage either--most are already trialing devices and several are working with provider groups to test things out.

To catch up on this trend:
- read this iHealthBeat article

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