When innovation draws a new future for patient treatments

A recent summit explored how technological advances could impact patient care.
Nov 10, 2016
  • We live in a world of rapidly evolving technology, and people with chronic diseases have an extraordinary opportunity to harness these advances.
  • At the recent European Patient Innovation Summit in Milan, key speakers including Sam Dickinson of Google and Esther Rodriguez-Villegas of Imperial College London provided insight into how technological advances could impact disease management.
  • Novartis is committed to helping define new ways in which medicines are delivered to patients.

What is the difference between NASA in 1969 – the year it put a man on the moon – and the smartphone that you use every day? The phone in your hand has more computing power than the entire NASA organization had in 1969, and its processing speed is a million times more powerful.

As this juxtaposition shows, we live in a world of rapidly evolving technology – and people with chronic diseases have an extraordinary opportunity to harness these advances to transform the quality of their everyday lives.

In presentations at the recent European Patient Innovation Summit in Milan, key speakers including Sam Dickinson of Google and Esther Rodriguez-Villegas of Imperial College London provided insight into how technological advances could impact disease management.

Wearable technology

We are constantly transmitting information about our health and well-being, providing the opportunity for wearable technology to capture these signals and monitor prediagnosed conditions. To be truly valuable to patients, according to Rodriguez-Villegas, future devices must be:

  • Small and lightweight

  • Portable

  • Non-intrusive

  • Accurate in the information they provide

Furthermore, the ability to instantly identify symptoms or changes in symptoms would boost our chances of treating diseases at their onset rather than having them go undetected, and would also optimize disease management. Real-time analysis of what is happening in our bodies would equip patients with the information they need, whenever they need it most to ensure proper care.

Matching enormous quantities of data secured from wearable technology with newfound processing abilities provides us with increasing opportunities to monitor the progression and fluctuation of symptoms for each patient. This will lead to the creation of more personalized treatment paths – bringing us into a world where hyper-personalized medicine is the norm.

Patient and physician dialogue

The diagnostic and monitoring tools developed as wearable technology will impact patients beyond their everyday lives and transform their relationships with healthcare providers. In the future, patients who go to the hospital for a consultation could arrive armed with comprehensive personal data that extends beyond diagnostic monitoring to psychological observations and a different range of potential biomarkers. This would improve and accelerate doctors’ understanding of their patients’ unique needs, allowing for more sophisticated treatment planning than current methods could ever provide.

With the opportunity that technology brings, Novartis is committed to helping define new ways in which medicines are delivered to patients.

These insights were taken from the European Patient Innovation Summit, where 130 patient advocacy groups from 22 countries gathered to discuss how technology will revolutionize the journeys of patients and patient groups alike. For more insights, watch some of the presentations.