This Herman Trend Alert is great news for people like our author Joyce who wears a FitBit. Not long ago, we had the pleasure of sharing a flight with Mark Silverio, Vice President, Sales, for the company that makes these practical wearables. We took the opportunity to learn more.
Wearables are becoming smarter
Like many trackers and watches, FitBits are evolving. Not only are the touchscreens easier to use, but there will be more notifications—if you want them—and they will even detect problems in the wearer’s heart rhythm.
But that’s only the beginning
In the future, these wearables are going to not only deliver the user’s health stats, but more health insights and additional coaching as well.
Monitor and motivate
Already, the Fitbit reports the user’s Cardio Fitness Level—shows how fit one is compared to others of the same age and sex. The score is an estimate of the maximum amount of oxygen the body can use during exercise. The level is based on the resting heart rate and the user’s profile. The Fitbit also currently tracks the percentage of time the heart rate is at fat-burning versus cardio or peak level. Knowing what your levels are and what they could be creates the motivation.
Now employers can get even more from wearables
The recently released 2018 HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) Media Report says that blending wearables and PGHD (Patient-Generated Healthcare Data) with health coaching multiplies the value of the devices and data alone.
Why collecting data works
According to Rob Havasy, Senior Director, Health Information Systems at HIMSS, “It’s the Hawthorne effect. When patients believe their doctor or their nurse is looking at their data, they don’t eat the cake, take a walk rather than sit in front of the TV—they change their behaviors because they think someone is watching.” Moreover, researchers are learning how to transform wearables and activity monitors into more effective tools in both preventing disease and managing chronic disease. In fact, this HIMSS report found that 90 percent of business leaders who include wearable devices in their wellness initiatives believe they can have a positive impact on chronic disease management.
What to expect
With increasing capabilities, wearables will become more valuable to individuals and companies alike. Expect to see an expanding variety of wearables to suit every preference and taste.
To read the entire HIMSS study, visit here.
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