5. What will 2.0 immediate diagnostics be like?

Emmanuel Delamarche, of IBM Research, broke down the results of a report on 1,300 seniors. The most noteworthy conclusions are that more technology is needed for immediate diagnosis (“at point of care”), with more tests in doctors’ offices and fewer done at hospitals, given the mobility difficulties of these individuals.

Furthermore, more precise, detailed diagnostic tests are needed, specifically for chronic diseases, and technology to improve adherence to medication schedules. “We should add a patient contextual model to the psychological data, using cognitive technology,” he added.

Mobile diagnostic devices and sensors that help with healthy ageing are another great business opportunity, explained Anthony Turner of the University of Linköping, Sweden: the Wearable Technology report puts figures for this sector at one million billion.

“These devices empower users, who can efficiently manage their health anywhere, anytime, giving them the confidence that their data and any automatized actions are totally secure,” he highlighted.

An implicit part of this vision is the ability to provide advanced information management with real-time measurements regarding individuals and their environment. And, as Professor Turner noted, the recent boom in wearable sensors has highlighted the potential of ongoing measurement and users’ desire for personalized information.

In his opinion, the main bottleneck today in this area is the availability of reliable sensors that directly measure key biochemical parameters, which are essential for high-level algorithms for personalized health management.

“It is clear that biosensors for personalized health management will be important in the future. This is why we need to attract engineers, clinicians, managers and companies with new business models to implement and drive effective paths together,” he concluded.