Next step for Apple: The iPad hub

There is a lot of discussion at the moment about the iPad and it’s affect on low end Mac Sales and the sales of notebooks and netbooks. The fact is that you really need a PC or Mac to activate and update your iPhone, iPad and iPodTouch. So I have been thinking…..

If Apple were really smart (ok – Apple are really smart!) they would produce software for their Mac Mini that allows it to act as a hub for the iPad equipped family. Imagine them selling a Mac Mini that could automatically start up and operate as an iTunes/iPad hub. Put an app in the iStore to allow you to configure and control your Mac Mini (or any other mac for that matter). The Mac Mini is ideal for this now – With the HDMI interface you just plug it in to your large screen TV. Plug your iPad or iPhone in to the USB port anytime you want to do an update or backup.

#hcsd10 Bump your Prescription – Creating the virtuous circle of PHR adoption

This week saw a vibrant HealthCamp San Diego (#HCSD10) go in to the history books as the Inaugural South West Health Un-Conference. HealthCamp San Diego took place the day before the mHealth conference. There are a lot of mHealth events scheduled. It is THE hot topic in healthcare at the moment.

I was just reading Chilmark’s review of: 

“Is the mHealth Hype Justified?”

One comment caught my eye: 

the story from Stanford Medical School where new med students this year have been issued an iPad in the hopes of replacing mounds of paper that are typically distributed to students for a course over a semester. The students seem to like it and even one of the doctors is quoted as saying towards the end of the article that the iPad is in an ideal form/function factor for a busy physician.” [my bolding]

This made me think. We have a brilliant opportunity to create a virtuous circle of ePHR adoption amongst consumers. When the iPad launched a survey showed that 60% of physicians were purchasing or showing an interest in the device. 

Imagine the situation where Doctors are using an iPad in their surgery to record the notes from a patient visit. When they issue a prescription the patient could pull out their iPad or smartphone and “bump” to collect the prescription and any notes from the visit. Gone would be the days where the patient forgets most of what they are told within five minutes of walking out of the Doctor’s office. The hyperlink truly becomes a prescription.

The technology for this is already available:

A Bump Application

QR Codes could handle prescription data – just like airline boarding passes. We used the United Airlines Mobile Boarding Pass on the return trip. No need for paper as we passed through the TSA checkpoints and the boarding gate.

Smartphones can read QR Codes. Therefore a major scanner infrastructure is not essential but can be implemented in high volume locations. This means that adoption at even the smallest pharmacy is possible. The prescription can be “held” at a web site and once used is no longer available. This is exactly how online boarding passes work.

A mobile PHR application can be used to collect the information and store the data securely on Google Health or Microsoft HealthVault where it can be integrated with other data to create a complete view of our health.

The same bump application could be used to securely pass data collected from the patient – from their PHR to the doctor’s iPad as part of the consult.  


Reflecting on #hcsd10 – HealthCamp San Diego

I am traveling back from another very successful HealthCamp event. Thanks to the hard work of Gregg Masters (@2healthguru), Mike Kirkwood (@mikekirkwood) and their team of volunteer organizers (especially the crew from Kaiser Permanente) HealthCamp San Diego proved tk be another high energy event, this time preceding the second mHealth networking conference. HealthCamp San Diego attracted bloggers, mobile experts, physicians and entrepreneurs who all shared a common passion – improving healthcare. The association with the mHealth conference placed a strong emphasis for the day on mobile health and the engaged consumer/patient. This made for some great conversation. What can we learn from the discussions?

– information needs to be actionable

– we need to be able to provide personalized filters to manage the data flow

– devices and sensors need to adapt to users and not force the user to adapt to them

– physicians, clinicians and patients are all mobile and mobile devices need to support them

– physicians are adopting smartphones and iPads rapidly

– we need to build trust between patients and the medical community.

– As consumer telemedicine devices are adopted the Data needs to be collected in the patient’s PHR and the medical community needs to become comfortable with using the information that is collected.

 – when the patient and their PHR are put at the center issues like HIPAA become a lot simpler.


One thing that seemed clear to me as I reflect on HealthCamp San Diego….

There are a lot of great technologists thinking about what mHealth means for better healthcare – but no one has a lock on what that really means.

Now is the time for consumers to voice their opinions by joining this conversation. Both doctors and patients need mobile solutions to provide actionable information, in context (of both time and place) in a way that the information can flow to and from others applications and be openly but securely shared ( under the direction of the patient – or their nominee) in a trusted relationship that leads to better outcomes for the patient.

Mark Scrimshire
….Sent from my iPhone

#hcsd10 – The Internet of Things – session led by @NMANALOTO

@NMANALOTO from Kaiser led a session at HealthCamp San Diego (#hcsd10) talking about the Internet of Things.

Everything is connected to the web (or will be). Devices need to react to you rather than the other way around.

Wii Fit is a great model for engagement.

CareFirst’s new HealthyBlue product is a step in the direction of rewarding consumers/members for healthy behaviors.

Engagement – always tails off. How do you get persistence in adherence.
This is long term behavioral change.
In the teenage population adherence programs don’t work but the group is susceptible to messages around self-image.

Don’t overlook the social component in gaming.

@carolTorgan – We overlook scrapbooking. People are tracking their family lives. How do leverage that ownership?

Self Expression and ownership are also keys to persistent adherence.

#hcsd10 Palm 3 Track 4 – What’s working and What’s not in mHealth

Sean Vacellaros – Ignite Health leading a session at HealthCamp San Diego on what is working and what is not working in mHealth.

Here are some realtime notes from the session…

Aetna have an app for Medical Cards. The iPhone App provides a simple medical card that can be show to providers.

What works in HealthCare:

– ID and Eligibility
– Transfer of Information
– Geo-Location
– Edu-tainment
– Drug interactions and other tools such as PillBox, PillPhone (for dosage compliance)
– Information

For Physicians:
– Formularies
– Transcription
– Disease Management
– Sensing and Tracking
– iStethoscope
– Drug Guide 
– 5 Minute Clinical Consult
– Medical Dictionary

Clinical Trials


Incentive Programs
Geo incentives (e.g Foursquare)

13-18 year olds – Don’t use email. But they have phones with them at all times.
Points are big. Social Gaming comes in to play.

We have to incentivize the Physicians and clinicians. We need filters.

Doctors in Emergency Care. 10% or less of patients are invested in their own health.