This is What The Future of Healthtech Looks Like

by Alton Zenon III
November 21, 2019

Tech companies in the complex, nuanced healthcare space are always striving to make things easier for patients. And with advances in mobile technology, machine learning and data wrangling, breakthroughs are inevitable. 

For educational content company Outcome Health, this means evolving the capabilities of their point-of-care devices to allow for integrations like voice commands. VillageMD is harnessing machine learning tools to aid in its decision-making. And higi, a health station kiosk company, is investing in new tech and partnerships that will enhance their user engagement, and thus the health of their users. 

Leaders at these three Chicago companies shared insights on where they see patients benefiting from future healthtech developments, and what role their companies will play in those evolutions. 

 

VillageMD team chatting in their office
VillageMD

VillageMD offers physicians analytics and care management tools they can leverage to provide better care to their patients.

CTO Mike Roberts said machine learning will play an increasingly large role in connecting physicians to patients in the future — no matter the location of either party — and the company is looking forward to using that technology in their own work. 

 

What does the future of healthcare technology look like, and what technologies are helping to drive the industry’s evolution?

The future of healthtech will look far more like the consumer technologies that we use every day. From a patient’s perspective, the technology will be intuitive, personalized and facilitate an experience that reduces friction with how, when and where to utilize the healthcare system. 

Along with this, advancements in data processing, machine learning and timely insight delivery will continue to bring physicians and patients closer together regardless of location.

...some of the latest tech we’re excited about includes simpler machine learning tools.”

How do you ensure your company stays on the cutting-edge of healthtech? What new technologies or products are you incorporating into your work?

We’ll stay on the cutting-edge in three ways. First, we’ll listen to our customers to ensure we’re solving for real problems. Second, we’ll continue to engage our employees and facilitate connectedness to our mission, our users and one another. Lastly, we will always use data to guide our decision-making process, including when we test new technologies. 

In terms of new capabilities that we’re incorporating into our work, we’re constantly prototyping, and some of the latest tech we’re excited about includes simpler machine learning tools, new mobile framework and context-aware bots.

 

higi team members working
higi

Jeff Bennett, CEO of higi, is working to keep connections strong between the health-tracking, data-focused kiosks they provide and their users. Bennett said user feedback influences whether the company chooses to adopt a new technology.

 

What does the future of healthcare technology look like, and what technologies are helping to drive the industry’s evolution?

Consumer demand for affordable, accessible care at current or improved levels of quality is the driving force in the evolution of healthcare and the technologies behind it. 

To win, companies have to think of the consumer first and foremost, and build infrastructure to exceed their expectations across every facet of their experience. They should ultimately connect consumers to the healthcare resources and partners they care about in a way that feels seamless and modern. 

Companies have to think of the consumer first and foremost...”

 

How do you ensure your company stays on the cutting-edge of healthtech? What new technologies or products are you incorporating into your work?

Everything we do starts by establishing how we are working in service of the millions of consumers who engage with our tech each month, and how that experience makes it easier for our users to engage with trusted healthcare organizations. Whether we partner with a new technology or develop our own, we prioritize how that new feature or functionality will better enable our users to engage with us, and in turn, with their health and healthcare partners.

 

Outcome Health team in group photo
outcome health

Outcome Health provides patients and physicians with educational content on interactive devices for the point of care space. With their offerings coming at such a critical time within the healthcare journey, CEO Matt McNally said it’s important that patients and caregivers feel the technology they’re engaging with suits their situational needs.

To that end, the company is investing in technologies requested by their end-users: think more mobile integrations for patients and voice activation capabilities for physicians.

 

What does the future of healthcare technology look like, and what technologies are helping to drive the industry’s evolution?

The future of healthcare technology, and more specifically the point-of-care space, must align with the needs of patients and physicians. We recently conducted extensive research to understand these needs. We discovered that patients, nurses and physicians all want more personalization and to feel like the technology they’re engaging with is empathetic to their unique experience. We’re using this research to guide our point-of-care content offering and the devices used to deliver information so that we can create an improved experience for the audience.

We are committed to building tech that complements, not distracts.”

 

How do you ensure your company stays on the cutting-edge of healthtech? What new technologies or products are you incorporating into your work?

Everything that we do is in service to patients. We’re not trying to keep up with the latest trends in tech, we’d rather keep up with what patients need. 

Regarding new technologies, we are looking at voice activation in certain categories. We’ve received feedback from our physician partners that, oftentimes, they don’t want to leave the side of their patients when delivering certain news, but they do want to pull up models on products like our Exam Room Wallboard, which may be on an opposite wall. With voice activation, they can still be next to their patients and use our devices to support the conversation. 

We are committed to building tech that complements, not distracts. With the rise of telemedicine, we’re starting to think about how to innovate beyond patient rooms so that Outcome Health can be with patients on their mobile devices when they’re outside of their doctor’s office. 

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