Technology companies’ interests in health and fitness have sparked the creation of a wide range of wearable devices, from simple pedometers that count your steps, to devices that monitor your sleep, body temperature and heart rate. These devices are being used by consumers to improve their health, and increasingly by healthcare organisations to improve their services and lower costs.
Yet these are still early stages of the technology and product adoption lifecycle. As wearable technology becomes less expensive, more powerful, and data quality improves, wearable devices will, in the not too distant future, become an integral part of the healthcare system.
Early stages of this process are already under way and wearables are increasingly helping to improve patient services. It will take time before they become truly part of every doctor and hospital, but thanks to flexible electronics we can imagine a future in which a plaster-sized wearable sensor, will tell our doctor all they need to know about our health.
FlexEnable, a world leading manufacturer of flexible electronics and wearable technology has recently carried out research on how wearable technology could transform the future of the UK healthcare industry by reducing overall hospital costs by 16%, and help with the treatment of conditions such as dementia, diabetes, cystic fibrosis and depression. They have kindly sent us an infographic illustrating their vision of a future where we will be better engaged with our health, and where wearable devices will ease demand on the healthcare system.