HealthVault – the Microsoft Personal Health Record platform – is now in Europe!
While, in several posts on EMEA Health blog, I was discussing the potential benefits of such a platform in Europe, a first launch happened this June in the UK.
According to research, 13% of the UK population are actively interested and engaged in looking after their ‘wellness’ – they do things such as exercise regularly, look after their diet, monitor their weight, take their temperature and blood pressure. Many of these people record this data in a variety of places – from apps on their phones to scraps of paper.
According to John Coulthard, Senior Director Healthcare and Life Sciences, with the launch of Microsoft HealthVault in the UK, Microsoft is offering those people a central repository for that data, where information can be entered manually by an individual for themselves or their family – or automatically from a range of compatible devices including weight scales, blood pressure monitors and pedometers.
Microsoft Health team partnered with MSN Life & Style and Nuffield Health to provide an application that enables wellness management. My Health Info, in partnership with Nuffield Health, is the first application to connect with HealthVault in the UK and provides a range of interactive tools to help users gather and visualise their health data to gain useful insights. The end-goal is improved health and wellness management for UK citizens. Nuffield Health will develop new functionality, start to offer weight loss advice and screening programmes and will encourage people to sign-up to gyms through interactive widgets within My Health Info.
Evidence shows that those people actively engaged in their wellness use only two-thirds of the UK NHS resources of those who don’t look after themselves. If Microsoft HealthVault and its partners can help raise that 13% of people engaged in their wellness to, say, 25%, it is inferred that the savings for NHS could be as high as £5bn a year.
The first implementation of HealthVault in Europe is just an additional step towards empowerment of individuals in dealing with their own, and their family’s health. We expect that many applications, in the area of fitness and wellness, will be developed by Microsoft partners. Further developments, especially integration with health professionals’ EHRs could bring additional benefits to research, control of costs and increase of quality of care.
This is a cross-posting from Octavian’s EMEA Health Blog