The University of Queensland researchers have developed a comprehensive plan outlining the integration of smartwatches into Australia’s healthcare system. However, the researchers agree that significant obstacles must be solved before this becomes a reality.
A significant change in how we monitor our health and general well-being has resulted from recent technological advancements. The smartwatch is one such device with enormous promise. Smartwatches, initially offered as a convenient extension of our cellphones, are now recognized as essential aids in chronic disease prevention. Smart wearables provide numerous capabilities that help people to take control of their health and make good and timely decisions.
Continuous Monitoring with Smartwatches
The ability of smartwatches to continuously monitor important health metrics is one of its main advantages. Smartwatches can identify anomalies or changes in health measurements and provide early warning indications of potential chronic illnesses by gathering and analyzing this data. Users can obtain insightful information on their general health, enabling them to take proactive measures to treat any new health problems before they worsen.
Personalized Health Tracking for Chronic Disease Prevention
The delivery of personalized healthcare to those with illnesses like obesity, diabetes, and arthritis could be changed entirely by smartwatches. By utilizing smartwatches, a comprehensive evaluation of a patient’s well-being can be conducted, allowing for personalized care and attention.
According to the authors, using smartwatches has become prevalent among Australians, with approximately one out of every three individuals owning this device. Smartwatches have become a popular means of taking care of one’s health and overall welfare, serving as a prevalent approach to managing personal well-being.
However, a number of obstacles, including interoperability and data accuracy, prevent the use of smartwatches in clinical decision-making in the healthcare industry. These two issues are among five concerns that impede the widespread adoption of smartwatches for medical purposes.
The roadmap emphasizes three key areas to address the challenges at hand:
- Establishing the groundwork for digital health prevention.
- Revolutionizing preventive care through data and analytics.
- Harnessing learning systems to enable targeted disease prevention.
Numerous health parameters, such as step count, heart rate, sleep patterns, and blood oxygen levels, can be tracked by smartwatches. However, it’s noteworthy to remember that different devices will record data with varying degrees of accuracy.
When individuals notice a potential health risk indicated by their wristwatch, they may seek medical attention. However, distinguishing between data suitable for medical purposes and data intended solely for entertainment can pose a challenge.
The control and ownership of health measurement algorithms by specific smartwatch manufacturers pose a hindrance to third parties attempting to access the data. To effectively analyze the extensive data generated by smartwatches, medical professionals will require specialized training.
The researchers emphasize that the roadmap is simply a reference, and the complete integration of smartwatches is still a considerable distance away. Further concerns emerge regarding the ownership, storage, and availability of data.
Enhancing consumer health outcomes can be achieved by healthcare providers through increased regulation and data research, enabling them to deepen their understanding of wristwatch utilization in chronic disease management.
Smartwatches are transforming the way we approach chronic disease prevention and management. These wearable devices offer continuous monitoring, personalized health tracking, medication reminders, stress management tools, and emergency assistance. Utilizing the power of technology, people can actively participate in their health and well-being, improving chronic illness prevention and management.
Dr. Tamanna Anwar is a Scientist and Co-founder of the Centre of Bioinformatics Research and Technology (CBIRT). She is a passionate bioinformatics scientist and a visionary entrepreneur. Dr. Tamanna has worked as a Young Scientist at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She has also worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada. She has several scientific research publications in high-impact research journals. Her latest endeavor is the development of a platform that acts as a one-stop solution for all bioinformatics related information as well as developing a bioinformatics news portal to report cutting-edge bioinformatics breakthroughs.