Tech companies aren’t afraid to dream big, and the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is the ultimate platform for them to debut their latest gizmos and futuristic innovations.
There’s no better place to catch a glimpse of new and innovative medical technologies and devices than at the CES.
What is CES?
A brainchild of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), CES is a wildly popular trade show held every January at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Nevada.
It’s not just another conference, but the world’s most anticipated tech event graced by over 180,000 participants, 6,000 journalists, and 4,500 exhibitors.
In the past five years or so, CES has continued to play an increasingly prominent role in healthcare innovation. In fact, health tech had a bigger presence than ever at CES 2019, with a diverse blend of over 620 wearable and 505 digital health exhibitors.
A Roundup of the Best Digital Health Devices at CES 2019
Medical devices and software have become pervasive in modern healthcare. In fact, the disruptive medical technology industry is expected to be worth $410 billion by 2023.
As the world turned its attention to CES 2019, it came as no surprise that connected health technology and medical equipment stole the show.
Here are the seven most groundbreaking digital health devices displayed at CES 2019:
HeartGuide by Omron
User medical wearables have “graduated” from mere fitness trackers to nifty wearables that help people prevent, monitor and effectively manage complex health conditions.
Omron, the long-time maker of blood pressure machines, is at the forefront of this revolution.
HeartGuide by Omron is an advanced fitness tracker, smartwatch and blood pressure monitor, all rolled into one sleek-looking device. Priced at $499, the CES Awards winner enables users to take blood pressure readings on the go.
According to the CDC, one in three American adults has high blood pressure, a well-known precursor of stroke and heart disease. Given that a stroke occurs every 40 seconds in the U.S., this wearable blood pressure taker is truly a godsend.
Early tests have shown that this medical wearable is comparable to a hospital-grade sphygmometer, if not better. It takes HeartGuide less than 30 seconds to give a clinically-accurate reading.
What’s more, Omron’s smartwatch can track your sleep patterns, count your steps, calories burned, and help you stay on top of every aspect of your fitness. Equipped with tiny sensors and pumps, it continuously checks your blood pressure vitals for signs of lurking health issues like cardiovascular and kidney disease.
The icing on the cake is its companion app, HeartAdvisor. You can use it to view, examine and share with your doctor all gathered fitness and health data. The device was also recently named one of the best pedometers of 2019.
Addison by Sameday Security
Caring for older adults living alone is associated with an estimated $6.7 billion in additional annual Medicare spending. With 10,000 baby boomers retiring every day, this burden is expected to increase
To address this, senior care has gone tech. Sameday Security is leading the way in this area with Addison. A senior care digital assistant, Addison is powered by a combination of virtual reality (VR), AI and speech recognition technology. Built on top of Amazon Sumerian, the tablet app is designed to be emphatic and affectionate, while tracking seniors’ gait parameters and vitals to prevent falls and other emergencies. It also doubles as a nurse assistant and a fitness instructor. It reminds seniors to exercise, eat healthy, and take their meds on time.
Move ECG by Withings
Withings (part of Nokia) unveiled its latest smartwatch, Move ECG.
The medical wearable comes with a built-in ECG monitor that allows the user to not only take and monitor their ECG readings, but also track their health and fitness activity.
According to Withings, Move ECG was specially designed to help identify atrial fibrillation (Afib), a condition characterized by extremely irregular heartbeats. It alerts the wearer if and when they need to seek physician consultation. The device can also relay activity and ECG data directly to a user’s doctor.
Charlie, a Medical Robot by New Health Community
In an age where physician burnout has reached epidemic proportions, it’s the patient that suffers the most. Doctor-patient time has been reduced to hasten conversations, which is why medical robots like Charlie by New Health Community are a welcome addition.
Connected via a PC, tablet or smartphone, this robot enables patients to consult with their physicians from the comfort of their hospital rooms. It also comes with Sophrology apps that take the patient through a series of relaxation, breathing and meditation exercises. Like a regular doctor, Charlie has a stethoscope, oximeter, and tensiometer, which allow patients to conduct self check-ups without the help of a nurse or clinician.
exoRehab by Exosystems
Neuromuscular rehabilitation is a physiotherapy discipline that’s gaining more and more traction. Exosystems, a South Korean health tech startup has just raised the bar with its latest device, exoRehab.
This medical wearable sends highly targeted therapeutic electrical stimulations to the patient. It also provides patients with rehab and training exercises that are tailored to their own health, fitness and body data.
Stress is a hidden killer — and it’s everywhere.
It’s associated with all six leading causes of death in the U.S .: liver cirrhosis, suicide, accidents, lung disease, cancer, and heart disease.
What if you could literally switch off your stress? With the TouchPoint wearable, you can. Thanks to its haptic micro-vibration technology called BLAST, the wearable can help you lower stress while on the go, so you can stay rational, calm and perform at your best all day.
By using the medical device, you can relieve 62 percent of your stress in a matter of 30 seconds, according to TouchPoint.
Sleep Robot by Somnox
Last, but not least is Somnox Sleep Robot, a health tech device that has already made major headlines for its ability to do wonders for your sleep. Given that insomnia is linked to health issues like depression, obesity, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes, it deserves the attention it’s getting.
This peanut-shaped robot has a three-pronged strategy to help you fall asleep faster, and sleep longer: it focuses your attention, it slows down your breathing, and it plays calming sounds.
These are but a few of the medtech products that caught our eye at CES 2019.
As we turn our attention to CES 2020, we certainly wonder what’s in store for patients.
Perhaps the best medtech devices and technologies that will garner attention at CES 2020 will be greatly influenced by current digital health trends:
Artificial intelligence (AI) will take center-stage. AI is causing a major shift across healthcare; medtech companies are taking notes. There’s no doubt that most future wearables and digital health devices will leverage AI to help with disease diagnosis, better management of complex health conditions, and much more. As per Digital Authority Partners, AI-drive healthcare tech market will be worth $34 billion by 2025.
On-demand healthcare is here to stay. 77 percent of Americans already have a mobile phone. This has given rise to patient-centric healthcare where consumers want care at their convenience. Accenture survey confirms that 42 percent of consumers want online booking, and 66 percent of health facilities are ready to offer self-scheduling to patients.
Medical wearables are on the rise. There’s no slowing down in the growth of medical wearables from heart rate sensors to step counters. CES 2020 will be a wearables affair. After all, 4 in 5 consumers say they are willing to wear a data-collecting wearable device.
Medical device software development will become even more crucial. Whether it’s attached to an implantable device or is used as an app on your smartphone, medical device software will continue to play an important role in healthcare in 2019 and beyond. Among its many benefits are the ability to enable remote monitoring, diagnostics, and therapy adherence across numerous clinical areas.
Big Data is too big to ignore. Health techs are using big data to power solutions that empower healthcare staff, reduce medical errors and facilitate preventive care. It’s safe to say that CES 2020 will feature many products powered by Big Data. More importantly, healthcare organizations, clinicians, researchers, and other stakeholders can stand to benefit from big data insights.
The future of virtual reality (VR) is brighter than ever. VR-based medical training and consumer devices are becoming a mainstay at CES, and for good reason. Surgeons trained through VR simulators are 29 percent more accurate and faster than traditionally-trained peers. The medical VR market is expected to reach $5.1 billion by 2025.