The future of medicine sits squarely in wireless telecommunication and devices—and the future is now.
The population of the U.S is aging and healthcare costs are on the rise. Add to that the very real possibility that private practice will all-but-disappear within five years or so from now and the case for wireless, physician-accessibility becomes all the more vital.
Qualcomm, always a major player in wireless technology, is looking to gain all-star designation by launching a wholly-owned subsidiary, Qualcomm Life. This segment will focus specifically on wireless healthcare and is tied directly with the release of the company’s wireless connectivity platform. The platform will allow users, physicians, hospitals, patients, to have wireless connectivity without needing a wireless carrier, without data fees and without the need for a password to access Wi-Fi networks. This technology is the same as that used by Amazon for its Kindle e-readers, developed by… Qualcomm.
The 2net™ Platform from Qualcomm Life is a unique, cloud-based solution that enables the wireless transfer, storage and display of medical device data. The platform is designed to be interoperable with different medical devices and applications, providing end-to-end wireless connectivity. Thus, it will not matter what device (i.e. iPhone, Android, Blackberry) being used, nor which carrier (i.e. Verizon, Sprint, ATT), the Qualcomm platform will interface with all.
Lest you think that this has negative HIPAA ramifications, the modality has already been approved by the FDA, meeting the vital healthcare security and privacy requirements. The San Diego-based communication is definitely ahead of the curve, knowing very well that wireless connectivity is an innovative and essential aspect of new medical devices and communication technology.
Qualcomm is not the only entrant in the medical wireless device arena. 3M has unveiled a healthcare application that is said to allow health care professionals to better coordinate their schedules, review patient data, dictate progress notes and log changes on their mobile devices. The 3M Mobile Physician Solution is designed to interface with most smartphones, which, surveys show are used by approximately 84% of physicians. The new 3M technology allows physicians to identify key patient information; access medications, allergies, and lab tests and record and transmit progress notes using speech recognition systems. With the 3M Mobile Charge Capture, capturing and applying professional fee charges by pairing appropriate billing codes with procedures will lead to quicker and more accurate payment.
With physician reimbursements coming in at the speed of the proverbial turtle and Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance payments being sliced and diced, doctors in every field count on available new technology to generate more accurate and faster payment modalities. When these are coupled with better patient-record access and increased productivity, wireless technology in the medical realm is a win-win situation and one that will only be improving and expanding. Getting in on ground-floor investments in wireless medical technology should be a serious consideration for those investing in today’s healthcare companies. Investments in many life sciences and healthcare sectors continue to perform well. It is crucial for investors to continue to analyze current and future revenue sources to meet the opportunities and the challenges as they arise.