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Health tech that connects people to quality care
By Dr. Laura Mauri, SVP & Chief Scientific, Medical, and Regulatory Officer
Real-time monitoring. Remote healthcare with virtual notifications. Personalized insights to help tailor care to individual needs. That’s connected care — and it’s one of the ways Medtronic is taking a people-centered approach to improving the overall patient experience.
We know that people are at the core of the connected care ecosystem. And when it comes to health and wellbeing, we can make care more personal by considering three critical factors: a patient’s needs, our scientific understanding of the human body, and the ways technology can make better health more accessible.
Medical devices are getting smarter. With advances in technology, they are smaller and more sophisticated — sensing and processing detailed information every millisecond and delivering the appropriate therapy, all within a patient’s body.
A good example is the world’s first hybrid closed-loop insulin delivery system. Medtronic designed this solution with people in mind. It delivers insulin based on continuous glucose monitoring and reduces the need for people with diabetes to actively make adjustments, giving them more freedom to live their lives. Insights collected from patient data can then inform a clinician to help tailor treatment and keep family connected as well.
More than ever, the pressures of work are leaving doctors physically and mentally exhausted. Artificial intelligence can help reduce these burdens. It can scan thousands of images in real time to enhance clinical decision-making, informing diagnosis or improving procedure outcomes. See 8 ways AI is helping physicians and patients.
Other examples that use wireless connectivity and in-home patient monitoring platforms to connect patients and their care teams include cardiac pacemakers and neurostimulators to treat pain and Parkinson’s disease. So personalized care can happen seamlessly, and in an even more tailored way than before.
These technologies also contribute to a greater understanding of patients’ needs and the science of the human body, enabling the transformation of people-centered, patient-focused care and our understanding of the factors influencing health.
Healthcare technology is creating more connections in new ways, with advances that make care more accessible. Here are some emerging health tech solutions:
To innovate, improve, and make connected care successful, Medtronic is being systematic in our people-first approach. That includes ensuring diverse representation in research and treatment.
In the past, most developments in healthcare technology sprang from close collaboration between a doctor and an engineer. While that expertise is important for understanding the human body and technology, we also need information about how people interact with the technology.
–Dr. Laura Mauri, SVP & Chief Scientific, Medical, and Regulatory Officer
Because not all patients are the same, it’s vital for us to prioritize the needs of diverse communities.
For example, more than 35 million people live with diabetes in the United States. However, Black and Hispanic Americans with diabetes are two to three times less likely to use technology to treat the disease, compared to white Americans. Medtronic is working to remove some of the barriers that lead to this disparity through interventions in diabetes care, increasing diverse representation in clinical studies, partnering with provider centers, and educating patients. Hypertension, stroke, and other heart and neurologic conditions also disproportionately affect communities of color and warrant dedicated attention through similar collaborations.
It can help to think of connected care like a circle. It starts with the patient. Then data and insights that can be used by their care team. Then that information can expand into the wider community to benefit others and improve access.
With connected care, we’re using science and technology to focus on what people really need. To advance the wellbeing of people around the world — and to alleviate pain, restore health, and extend lives — we must continue improving and evolving.