How has digital health helped improve patient care? Hear from our Digital Health Impact speakers

Oct 18, 2022

Before we examine the current state of digital health as it relates to the life sciences, the challenges facing its growth, and opportunities for collaboration at MassBio’s upcoming Digital Health Impact 2022 on November 3, get a preview from some of our speakers:

How has digital health helped improve patient care as it relates to the life sciences, how is it growing and what are the challenges facing its growth?

The full gamut of digital health technologies is driving a revolution in patient-centric care. Of course, telehealth and medical telemetry mean medical interactions at times and places convenient for the patient, reducing delays in seeking and obtaining care. But it goes further: Computational diagnosis and computerized decision support are key technologies to diagnoses and treatments personalized to each patient. We’re just scratching the surface of what these digital health tools in the hands of patients and clinicians will enable. Once workable revenue models are identified for equipping more patients and leveraging more devices and data, this transformation will accelerate.

AJ Tibbetts, Esq., Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig

Digital health services may provide faster access to medical care and can help patients monitor and manage their health conditions in real-time. For example, continuous glucose monitors provide individuals with feedback about their blood glucose levels with a quick scan of the sensor using a smartphone app. This in turn allows a person to make informed decisions about insulin dosing and diabetes management. Global digital health funding was at a high point in 2021, leading to tremendous growth in the number of digital health companies. The 2022 global economic challenges have led to a decline in global digital health investment – and this may slow down the rate of future developments in the digital health field.

Dr. Pam Diamond, Co-Founder & CMO, Curevit

From my perspective, digital health has improved patient care in two ways:   First, digital health has allowed patients to receive care where they are in many situations. This fact increases access to those who might not have the ability to make an in-office visit or need frequent intervention. Second, digital health has the promise to allow healthcare providers to have a more holistic view of their patients’ health status at any time. 

Digital health is a broad term. I see the greatest sector of growth being in the therapeutic app area. This area is facing a mortal challenge similar to other digital health technologies related to reimbursement.  Payers and providers often do not trust the data that are produced even if the product is approved by FDA. Often the data used fur approval is only the beginning of the data needed for reimbursement as stakeholders expect to see studies the size and number similar to drug studies or large amounts of real world evidence. 

Tony Watson, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, Pear Therapeutics

The promise of digital health technologies will not only improve patient care, but will democratize access to care for all of humanity.  That means the stakes are high for an industry that moves fast—digitally fast.  But fine-tuning the risks and rewards of this new future will necessarily implicate not one, but two of the most important federal agencies:  FDA and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).  Meeting these governing bodies where they are, and empowering them to utilize their resources to support the future of digital health will be the biggest challenge ahead.

Andrew Tsui, Of Counsel, Greenberg Traurig, LLP

At its best, digital health enables individuals to play a more active part in their healthcare. Our efforts need to be centered around human beings, their needs and their dignity. Therefore, we need to empower individuals using digital health products and services and provide them with information, control and choices – about their health and their data.

Lydia Knab, Global Privacy Lead, Specialty Care

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