Four Innovation Trends that Drive Our Research & Development Efforts

At GuideWell, innovation is core to our DNA. So much so – that “imagination” is a core value. While imagination, freethinking and a collaborative environment guide our culture, we do have a method to our innovation madness.

Central to this methodology is the need to focus our research and development efforts and ensure that they are aligned to helping us achieve our mission of helping people and communities achieve better health.

Focus is harder than it sounds. There are so many opportunities for improvement in the health care system and innovation efforts and new health technologies are all around us. How does an organization like GuideWell decide on where to focus time, energy, resources and money?

We’ve evaluated the major trends in health innovation and have settled on four key areas of focus where we feel like we can have an impact and make a real difference. These trends complement the expertise of the four entities that make up the GuideWell family of forward-thinking companies.

Health Innovation Trends to Watch

  • Digital Meets Physical
  • Bio-Health Technology
  • Mobile & Remote Health
  • Big Data & Next Gen Analytics

Let’s explore these trends and their real world applicability to helping reshape and reimagine the future of health.

Digital Meets Physical
The world around us is changing dramatically in terms of how technology helps us to manage our lives. Frequently referred to as “The Internet of Things”, this phenomenon is quickly becoming the norm as to how we manage our health care experiences and goals in a more integrated and convenient way. Think wearables like smart watches and fitness monitors and mobile apps that help you manage weather and environmental concerns. This trend is only becoming more and more important. GuideWell is exploring ideas in wearable devices, virtualization and 3D imaging, sensors and geospatial mapping. We are focused on solving for solutions that help digital devices work together to support the goals of the individual and ensure that security and privacy remain paramount.

Bio-Health Technology
Genomics, personalized medicine, molecular regeneration, brain control interfaces and synthetic biology all play a part in the bio-health technology trend. GuideWell is looking at how we can utilize available technology to make the best care decisions for the individual patient. For example – cancer medications are not one size fits all. By understanding someone’s DNA providers will have the ability to prescribe the most beneficial treatment protocol based on an individual’s unique make-up.

Mobile and Remote Health
Administering remote diagnostic care is a critical trend to watch as we think about the growing population of health care consumers and the shortage of primary care physicians. Being able to reach individuals through video-conferencing, video chat, email and cell phone applications in order to help prevent and manage disease, provide medical education and deliver integrated health care administrative services is allowing employers to keep a healthier workforce and enabling leading-edge modern medicine to be accessible in rural locations helping to offset the health care disparities found in these populations. Remote Health spans the spectrum of sophistication from telephone calls, videoconferences, televisits, screening kiosks to highly complex remote surgery.

GuideWell is currently exploring models to help make remote health options accessible to both employer populations and health care consumers based in rural locations.

Big Data & Next Gen Analytics
Big data is all the rage. In health care – big data can have a tremendous impact on helping to make our communities healthier – if it is used and focused in the right way. We are looking at ways to make the vast amounts of data on patients available through insurance claims and medical records more valuable to physicians so that they can make better care decisions. We are also looking at opportunities to layer additional non-clinical data with clinical data so that providers, caregivers and patients have a more personalized holistic picture of the individual.

Stay tuned to this blog for additional information on specific research and development programs, partnerships and entrepreneurial efforts in each of these four areas.

Are you interested in discussing our Innovation approach and program further and/or do you have partnership opportunities we should consider? Connect with us on Twitter @_GuideWell or on LinkedIn.