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Wireless Biometric Monitoring Device Gets Sticky – It Wants to Be Attached Near the Heart of the Issue

Posted Feb 03 2010 6:38am

We have new entry into the body monitoring, behavioral information data arena, but unlike other that clip on, this one sticks on.  I guess the closer the devices get imagethe better the data?  This one is not here the US, well yet anyway, but we have few others around .   They all talk to a cell phone or a PC and wellness coaches are pushing these so they get the data….the data…the reason behind all of this so we have data.  Of course there is the use of generating better healthier habits, but some of these devices need you to interact, and if you don’t, they text you, they email you, they buzz you, and darn we can hardly even handle a cell phone today without huge levels of distraction.  This one for the US might need the FDA involved here since it “sticks” to us. 

Maybe if the devices just sat there and did their thing it would be less disruptive.   Best Buy announced they were going to outfit their employees with a Muve Gruve.

Target Stores has a contract with a company called Red Brick Insurance who partners with Ingenix (a wholly owned subsidiary of United Healthcare) to offer discount on insurance for participation in wellness programs and biometric monitoring is part of the program they offer.

The Health Coach/Insurance Company – Employer plan to uses devices and phones for employees to prove their physical activity

I don’t know if it was his own device or one from the company, but I have already experienced the “disruption” in a Target store as a customer.  The young man fiddled around with his device, finished and then stood in front of me for 3 minutes rearranging bottles.  I cleared my throat, made some noise, banged the grocery cart, but no go, he was that distracted.  After watching him for a minute I grabbed my phone and timed him, over 3 minutes of standing in front of me oblivious.  That is the problem with all the biometric devices is that the people who design them forget that people with lives will be the ones wearing them.  Insurance companies are high on these as even though they legally can’t use the data and it is supposed to be confidential, just read those disclaimers and releases and see what life is really all about, as they are not created equally.  Here’s one more of those devices that I have written about and they say you can sleep with this one too, not me, I want just plain sleep as I spend my day with devices. 

Risk management will stand on their head three times over for a bit of data to fold into some new algorithms for modeling, costing, and over all finding new ways to make qualifying more difficult as the algorithmic bars keep rising with new formulas added, some call this cherry picking, sounds good to me.  I know some maybe get tired of hearing the “A” word again, but when you leap out of “tech denial” the formulas and the people designing and running them are the ones with all the money today, some abusing technology and their secret weapons are the algorithms.  BD 

With it's rapidly aging population, few countries stand to gain as much from developments in the remote monitoring of bio-signals as Japan. As a culture that reveres the elderly it's likely that the Japanese will be one of the countries leading the charge in the growing field of bio-signal telemetry. Just one example is the HRS-I, or the human recorder system, that gathers health-related information and transmits it wirelessly to a mobile phone or PC. 

The HRS-I collects information through a small sensor attached to the chest, which measures electrocardiograph signals, body surface temperature, as well as human movements via a triple-axis sensor. The device can detect stress levels and heartbeat fluctuations as well. The information it gathers can then transmitted wirelessly to a mobile phone or PC so it can in turn be forwarded to health professionals or family members in a remote location.

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