Thursday, January 12, 2012
Groups Form Alliance To Research In-Car Health Monitoring Technology
Ford, Microsoft, Healthrageous and BlueMetal Architects have announced a partnership to study how individuals can use monitoring technology in their vehicles to manage their health and wellness, Healthcare IT News reports (Healthcare IT News, 1/12).
Healthrageous is a developer of online mobile health applications and BlueMetal Architects is an interactive design and technology firm.
The companies announced the partnership during the Digital Health Summit at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Gary Strumolo -- manager of infotainment, interiors, health and wellness at Ford Research and Innovation -- said many people spend a significant amount of time in their cars, pointing to "a natural role for the automobile in the emerging digital health and wellness field" (Ford release, 1/11).
Introduction of Prototype
During the summit, the companies discussed a prototype of the system designed by BlueMetal Architects. The system uses biometric data collected from a wearable device, as well as spoken descriptions from the user about his or her health routine (Healthcare IT News, 1/12).
The system also allows users to upload data from their in-car monitors to Microsoft's HealthVault personal health record platform.
Strumolo said the new technology is "full of transformative potential" but is not meant to function as a medical device or diagnostic tool. He said, "There is a line we'll never cross," adding, "We don't want to have the car able to make predictions" (Versel, MobiHealthNews, 1/12).