Expanding Wireless Health Summit Looks to Inform and Change Patient Behavior

5/9/11Follow @bvbigelow

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antibiotic is easy in comparison, McCray says, because it represents an acute medical intervention—conducted under the supervision and orders of a doctor and carried out by a healthcare institution. “What’s overwhelming our system, though, are the ill effects of long-term human behavior”—and changing that behavior requires more sustained efforts, he says.

San Diego’s wireless health summit “never has been an event that aspired to be the Comdex of healthcare,” says Chris Hoffman, a senior principal and market research director at Triple Tree, an investment banking firm in Edina, MN, that has supported the WLSA and the emerging industry. But the annual event has grown significantly, from a one-day meeting of some industry executives to a three-day conference that is expected to draw close to 250 people each day. As a result, the sixth annual summit has moved to the more spacious Manchester Grand Hyatt in downtown San Diego.

The agenda includes a keynote talk by Qualcomm chairman and CEO Paul Jacobs, and features an update from the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health on the agency’s regulatory oversight of wireless health devices, apps, and services. Interest is high on this session, as the FDA has been developing a draft guidance document on how the agency might regulate health apps for wireless devices. A panel discussion billed as “Part I” in a conversation about paying for healthcare in America is intended to focus on new revenue models.

The program Wednesday is billed as more of an “investor day,” with a series of presentations by early stage companies that have been selected as finalists in the summit’s “i Awards” for innovative wireless health startups with technologies focused on consumer effectiveness, clinical applicability, and operational efficiency. (The winners will be announced later in the day.) An afternoon panel discussion about new models for healthcare providers is billed as “Part II” in the “paying for healthcare” conversation.

This year, the final day of the program is built around the concept of broadening development of the wireless life sciences ecosystem, with a keynote address by Dell computer’s chief technical officer, and a panel discussion on “driving mHealth innovation” with speakers from Cisco, AT&T, and Hewlett Packard.

Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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