Evolution of remote monitoring
Directions and developments
Remote monitoring is on the rise. How do you think it will evolve in the future?
We’re looking at three key areas of evolution. The first is that we will start to measure more and different kinds of data – and it will all be collected in a much more seamless way, without the user having to do anything. In order to get there, we anticipate there’ll be new types of sensors and probably a move towards more continuous measuring rather than just taking snap shots. This will allow healthcare providers to spot early signs of health conditions and carry out thorough face-to-face evaluations in good time. However, it's important to note that proactive care will complement, not replace the kind of monitoring we have today - which most often occurs post diagnosis i.e., when people are already managing an existing health condition.
Secondly, we anticipate more creativity when it comes to early detection. Data about people’s living and working environments, family history, stress levels etc. can all be fed into an AI system and provide contextual evidence to complement specific health data. Access to this type of information will generate a more holistic health picture and lead to deeper insights. AI and big data may highlight indications that a user is at risk of illness or at the least, pick up changes in health values that require further investigation.
And then, of course, there’s privacy and security. Privacy is of the utmost importance if users are to feel comfortable and safe. People need to be 100% sure that their data – which may include their mental state, relationship status and other deeply personal matters – is absolutely secure and will not be mis-used. The service provider needs to be the most trusted ‘friend’ the user has ever had.
What else can service providers do to build trust among end users?
Besides enhanced data security measures, the relationship between providers and patients can be strengthened in various other ways. For example, by building up non-monetary reward systems, as is done with blood donors today. The service provider might inform users about how their data has helped make a difference in research or offer patients an option to share their data within secure, private communities for people with a specific condition. Whichever path this type of development follows, data security and privacy will always be crucial.
What’s next for Sony’s remote health & safety monitoring solution, mSafety?
Proactive care is evolving, and we want mSafety to be the natural choice for all kinds of organisations looking to develop within this arena. Since other vendors may develop sensors and devices that can be integrated with mSafety, we are interested in talking to them. We are open to new collaboration opportunities.
So, within the next three years, our ambition is to provide the best, most adaptable data collection platform for remote health & safety monitoring and digital biomarkers. Secure data sharing will be a key part of the package. We’ll be adding blockchain-based technology and leveraging attribute-based encryption as part of the mSafety system. We will also be making turnkey solutions part of our service offering; for instance, for clinical trials.
The mSafety hardware (the wearable device), which has been an essential component of the system’s security-by-design from the beginning, may eventually take a back seat to our data collection and handling solution. This is because Sony’s unique expertise, and therefore the area in which we add the most value, lies in our ability to collect and manage large amounts of end user data using our cloud solution.
Having said that, we do intend to develop the watch itself; to add more form factors and sensor capabilities that make it possible to measure a broader range of parameters in future. And of course, we’ll be keeping ourselves closely aligned with future telecom technologies such as 5G and 6G.
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