When you think about the government’s role in healthcare, I bet the FDA, NIH and CDC are top of mind.
It’s time to expand your list.
Within three weeks, the FCC hosted two mHealth events featuring its Chairman:
- On May 17, Chairman Genachowski joined GE Healthcare (client), Philips and The George Washington University Hospital to discuss medical body area networks. This technology could monitor patient vital signs via small, wireless sensors worn on the body, and get rid of the wires/cables connecting patients to their hospital bed.
- On June 6 at an FCC summit, the Chairman announced more plans to spur mobile health, saying, “…in the coming months, the FCC will act on our proposal to create new experimental licenses for medical and other research.” The summit featured WellDoc (client) and its DiabetesManager, the only mHealth solution cleared by the FDA to provide real time, automated clinical and behavioral patient coaching for adults with type 2 diabetes combined with decision support for the patient’s doctor.
The FCC’s “deep-dive” into health highlights the growing convergence between medical and technology fields. Case in point: three top IT weekly publications – eWeek, Computerworld and Informationweek – have healthcare beat reporters.
The present and future of healthcare involves medical devices delivering drugs, transmitting information wirelessly, combining with advanced imaging, and using ever-more-powerful processing systems to help doctors make sense of all the data. Throw in robotics and powerful smartphones that act like computers, and we are reaching an exciting period of health innovation.
What does this mean for PR professionals? As the medical industry incorporates advances from increasingly diverse fields, companies will interface with more stakeholders - e.g. end-users and/or prospective partners. They need to help each make sense of it all. As a communications field, it is incumbent on us to:
- Guide companies through these challenges, helping to tailor messages that resonate with each technology-specific audience
- Engage mainstream investors and the general public, so they can understand the benefits of increasingly complex technologies
- Help companies work with regulatory bodies as they update their guidance for new medical paradigms
As technologies continue to get more multi-disciplinary, there’s a great PR opportunity to engage a wide array of audiences. We’re excited to keep diving into this work!
Posted by Jon Siegal on June 26, 2012 at 11:49 AM