News Feature | February 15, 2016

Three-Quarters Of Patients Would Use Health Tracker

Christine Kern

By Christine Kern, contributing writer

Older Patients Benefit From New Healthcare Technology

Over half of those polled would share their data with clinicians.

By Christine Kern, contributing writer

Over three-quarters (76 percent) of adults reported they would use a health tracking device that was clinically accurate and user friendly, according to a survey from The Society for Participatory Medicine and health technology company biotricity. Ultimately the study found a willingness of patients to collaborate with their healthcare providers to co-produce their clinical data.

“What this survey points out is that patients want to become engaged in their own health and collaborate with their healthcare professionals,” explained Daniel Z. Sands, MD, MPH, co-founder and co-chair of the Society for Participatory Medicine. “Patients view themselves as key contributors of health data to manage their own health between visits, and to share during visits. Ultimately, we believe that this will lead to improved patient outcomes and lower costs to the healthcare system.”

The survey of 1,011 U.S. adults was conducted in December 2015.

Additionally, 87 percent think it's important to monitor their own biometrics and 84 percent prefer to track their own medical health data to better manage their health. According to biotricity, 57 percent of the surveyed adults would share their data with a clinician, whereas 13 percent said it would only be for personal use and 5 percent said only for professional use. 

“Increasingly, patients are actively monitoring their own health data to better self-manage their chronic diseases and collaborate with their healthcare professionals,” Sands said. “Self-monitoring is a vital component of an efficient and high-functioning healthcare system. This survey shows that this concept resonates with the public and that most respondents are willing to utilize technology to gather this data to improve their health.”

The study also found 84 percent of participants believe self-tracking with devices and apps and sharing it with their health team would help them manage their health, while 77 percent believe that it would benefit both the provider and the patient in the healthcare process.

The fitness tracker sector is estimated to triple from $2 billion in 2014 to $5.4 billion by 2019, according to Parks Associates, a market research and consulting firm specializing in emerging consumer technology products and services. Its research data also found adoption of connected health devices jumped from 24 percent of U.S. households in early 2013 to 30 percent by the end of 2014.