News 3/11/11

ipad-2

Yet another reason why the iPad 2 will beat out all the rest in healthcare: the Apple app approval process. John Moore of Chilmark Research has a post about the differences, which developers often complain about, between Apple’s app submission and approval process and that used for apps in the Android Market, which is the only viable tablet platform competitor for Apple. I agree that the Apple app process, though no content is verified, does greatly reduce the risk of malware, but I think the iPad 2 will beat out the competition in healthcare for a multitude of reasons, including the Apple coolness factor and the price point.

ZDNet read my mind and has an article stating that in order for Apple’s tablet competitors to succeed, specifically Motorola and the Xoom, they need to find a way to drop the price to something at or below that of the iPad 2 ($499 base).

ONC logo

With ONC money to back them up, Children’s Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School launch the SMArt Platform health app competition. The SMArt platform is envisioned to be an app store for health, with applications geared towards both patients and providers. The winners will get a $5,000 prize and be the first to be included in the new app store. Is the business model for the app store that a percentage of app sales will fund SMArt to continue to review and approve submitted apps? If so, what is SMArt as an entity and will it be a non-profit partner to the government, sort of like an HIE?    

PatientKeeper CMO Donald Burt has an article on the need for hospitals to deploy physician-centric tools if they hope to achieve Meaningful Use. Number three on his list of five tenets for creating tools that docs will use is, “Let physicians practice anywhere, anytime” using mobile technology (smart phones and tablets). The other tenets are not mobile related but are relevant. It’s worth a read.

mHealth applications will help the elderly and their remote caregivers. This mHealth market segment is going to be pop over the next several years and it will be interesting to see who the big winners will be.

VesagWatch

Vyzin’s Electronics announces a Zigbee-enabled wireless medical watch for home monitoring. It has a GPS locator, a quick call button to reach call centers, and apparently measures 17 health parameters. I’m not totally clear how it does all this, but it certainly seems like a cool idea for older patients, especially those with dementia.  

Diversinet, the maker of the secure mobile platform Mobisecure, releases company results from 2010 with net income unchanged but revenue for the year down. This is a little surprising to me as the company seems to be getting a lot of positive press lately.

In an attempt to push off competition from Apple and Google, Microsoft came to agreement with Nokia earlier this week to pay them $1 billion to promote Windows Phone handsets.

Access-Mobility

New mobile medication adherence platform CellepathicRx is taking what seems like a smart path to revenue in the mHealth space, appealing to organizations that have money to spend and a real economic interest in medication adherence. The company behind CellepathicRx, Access Mobility, is targeting pharma, contract research organizations (CRO), and retail pharmacies. Other big customers down the road will be ACOs if they become financial liable for medication adherence.  

Washington University is testing remote robots for telestroke care at Parkland Health Center (MO) with the hopes of extending the service to other hospitals in the region.  

A new bill in the senate, The Fostering Independence Through Technology Act, if passed, would provide incentives to home health agencies to use remote monitoring and telemedicine.

Travis Good is in his final year of an MD/MBA program and is involved with multiple health IT startups.

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