Telecare on the 'slope of enlightenment'?

gimlet-eyeOn the Gartner hype curve, the ‘slope of enlightenment’ follows the ‘trough of disillusionment’–and telecare, or at least the sensor-based behavioral part, has been in the trough since about 2009. The Gimlet Eye sees a possible curve change coming from a surprising direction. Eric Wicklund, editor of mHIMSS, in this follow-on article from the October Connected Health Symposium, featured early-stage company BeClose and its founder/president Liddy Manson far more prominently than her fellow panelists on ‘Connected Health at Scale’, industry heavyweights Jasper zu Pulitz, president of Bosch Healthcare Systems and Roy Schoenberg, CEO of American Well. The fact that telecare has its moment not only on the panel, but also in an article in a well-recognized industry outlet, is cause for cheer. However, the Eye squints and sighs, heavily, at the depiction of telecare as ‘home surveillance’–a negative to both older people and caregivers that marketers have been trying to overcome since earliest days–and a lack of recognition that activity-based monitoring has actually been around since the early 2000s. Moreover, the Eye observes that BeClose is a basic, rules-based home system with a caregiver dashboard and alerts. Not exactly Telecare Release 1.0 and refined from their 2010 release [TA 1 April 2010], but not exactly the most advanced–QuietCare in 2005 was based on algorithms ‘learning’ normal behavior parameters, dashboarding results in simple red-yellow-green fashion and alerting multiple users for emergency deviations–seven years ago; WellAware and Healthsense now incorporate other telehealth (vital signs) features such as sleep quality and fall detection; GrandCare added and continues to develop extensive socialization features. The Eye wonders why Partners Healthcare did not reach out to these companies. Perhaps next year as a sign of enlightenment its own panel, complete with a twinkle in the Eye? BeClose turns the home security platform into an activity monitoring system (mHIMSS)