In a recent work session the question of how to control scope creep in product development came up. It was an interesting discussion and I was struck by how the causes could be described in a pretty simple way. That’s not to say controlling scope creep is simple, but knowing the source may be a place to start. Here are three to be aware of:
Recently people have been talking about the natural evolution of consumer wearables to include “medical grade” wearables and “ther-ables.” This conversation is happening as companies are thinking about how to broaden their markets, differentiate their offerings and improve value propositions. Many of the companies considering the jump to medical grade are currently selling products into the consumer fitness-tracking market. This market is lead by companies like Fitbit (2015, $1.8B revenue, 21.4M units sold) and players in the space are beginning view healthcare as an attractive adjacent market.
In the competitive landscape of medical devices and the advantages to being first to the market, many are tempted to move into product development at a rapid pace. Moving into product development quickly is full of risks, particularly in the medical technology space where development is heavily regulated and process driven. There are five elements of product development that you must thoroughly understand prior to entering formal medical device development to reduce risk. Missteps here will certainly cost you time and money and might even doom your product altogether.
Life Science Washington (formerly the WBBA) recently hosted an event called “So You Want to Build an App?” where researchers and technology leaders shared their experiences with developing mobile apps aimed at improving health. The participants are all working on innovative ways to improve delivery of care and increase patient engagement.
Life Science Washington (formerly the WBBA) recently hosted an event called “Navigating the Affordable Care Act.” The event brought together a diverse group of experts and business owners to discuss challenges and opportunities that have arisen as a result of the ACA. The shift in the healthcare market is significant and has generated new and interesting business ideas.
For someone who has had very little contact with the Virtual Reality (VR) world, the Technology Alliance’s recent event, “Realizing the Potential of Virtual Reality,” left my head spinning in more ways than one.
Consumers are increasingly leveraging mobile-oriented solutions across a range of use cases. One such use case is digital healthcare. Digital health, which represents the convergence of connected health, quantified self, genomics, and core healthcare IT trends, is among the key phenomena driving the next cycle of transformation in the healthcare industry. Millennials are driving this fundamental change in healthcare and the Baby Boomers need it. Today, we rely on digital technology for information, communicating, purchasing, entertainment, and social-networking. Healthcare becomes an extension of this digital technology.
Stratos Project Manager, Lisa Schmalhurst, recently shared some ideas about designing emotion into medtech, "Designing emotion into medical devices is really about fulfilling the user’s medical need in a way that aligns with their personal motivations. It doesn’t have to be a mystical thing to develop a compelling, user-facing medical device. There’s a great example of both sides of this argument in wearables. There are wearables for just about everything these days. Yet, a good number of them are used for two weeks to two months and then relegated to a drawer. Why?"
As part of its Discovery Series, Washington’s Technology Alliance recently hosted a breakfast featuring a talk by PATH CEO, Steve Davis, entitled “Innovation in Global Health.”
The talk was largely focused on the successes and ongoing goals of PATH, an international health organization based in Seattle. The organization is working on some remarkable initiatives, including the development of a vaccine for malaria, providing women in developing countries access to contraception and leveraging social media to provide information and impact behavior.
Stratos designers and engineers are inspired to push boundaries to bring new technologies to life, especially when those new technologies also improve lives. An area of extreme concern to Stratos has been an explosion of opioid addiction in America over the past 10 years. Opioid addiction is not new to mankind and has a cyclic rise and fall associated with ease of access.