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Brief Published: 14 Oct 2011

Wired 2011: Reinvented Healthcare


Aza Raskin, co-founder and CPO of mobile health start-up Massive Health and former Firefox Creative Lead, spoke at the opening day of the Wired 2011 conference in London. He claims we must rethink how technology and data processing is applied if we want to reduce the obesity crisis by empowering patients to understand their own health. There is a scientific link between obesity and increased risk of diabetes.

Raskin explained that with the current trajectory, 43% of the UK population will be obese by 2020, and 52% of Americans will be diabetic or pre-diabetic. He proposed that we need to create “feedback loops for the body” to remind diabetics to take their medication properly, and to teach them about their condition.

Raskin cited blood glucose monitors for diabetics as an example of current health monitoring systems that could be drastically improved. "Diabetics do this test a few times every day, and it gives you a number," he says while measuring his own glucose levels on stage. "Mine says 101. What the hell does that mean? It doesn't even tell you whether that number is good or not. It doesn't tell me I need to do something better this week than last week. No wonder people aren't compliant if this is the kind of support we give people!"

Wired 2011 ends today. Read more about how technology is transforming healthcare and empowering patients to monitor their own health in Sensing Health.

Wired 2011

Massive Health