Today We Are Data Collectors. Tomorrow We Are Possibly Healthier.
Today we are collectors of our personal health data. Tomorrow we are possibly healthier thanks in part to data gathered by wearable devices and sensors in our clothing and upon our bodies.
Your pulse might be 72, your respiratory rate 16, and you might have walked a total number of 5,550 steps so far today but the day isn’t over yet. While these numbers might not mean much to you today, they will tomorrow as doctors fundamentally re-approach the way they practice medicine.
As doctors begin to embrace wearable technology and reconsider the way they have traditionally practiced medicine, we must be careful not to misinterpret the data. If the data gathered from a wearable device is misinterpreted, the doctor could inadvertently offer a misleading and possibly incorrect course of action.
The same misinterpretation could be attributed to the financial markets. For example, if every single United States citizen stopped looking for work then the unemployment rate would be effectively less than 1%. While the markets would cheer and stocks would roar, this false understanding of the data would create an artificial bubble in the market which could then inflate prices before leading us into a deep recession.
While free markets can recover from the misinterpretation of data, a human being cannot. If data is profoundly misinterpreted by a doctor then the patient could suffer through any number of unnecessary treatments . Who would be to blame? The doctor or the data?
The doctor would be to blame, not the data as it is the doctor who misinterpreted the collected information. In order to avoid these catastrophic events in the future, doctors will need to fundamentally rethink and re-approach the way that they practice medicine.
It will be the forward thinking doctors who embrace a new way of practicing medicine and move to a concierge business model who will prosper in this new marketplace. These doctors will be able to hire the best engineers, data scientists, customer service specialists and forward-thinking physicians. These practices will be able to actively explore new ideas, study massive amounts of data, and embrace innovation with the goal of creating a healthier you.
While wearable technology might not make you healthier, it will force Doctors to fundamentally re-approach the way in which they currently practice medicine.