Pro Tips for Surviving the Digital Health Product Lifecycle

4.26.17
Culture

Two weeks ago, we co-hosted the 5th Annual mHealth@Duke Conference with the conference founders, the Duke Global Digital Health Science Center. Over 200 researchers, clinicians, and digital health innovators packed the Great Hall of Duke’s Trent Semans Center for Health Education. Attendees were treated to panel discussions, lightning talks, and expert presentations that covered all facets of the digital health product life cycle. Here are some key takeaways via Twitter, from some of the folks who were there.

Good morning! We're live at the 5th annual #mHealthAtDuke conference. Stay tuned from speaker insights about health and tech! pic.twitter.com/PETIKmKYcp

— Smashing Boxes (@smashingboxes) April 12, 2017

Keynote Address

       
  • Presenter: Drew Schiller, CEO & Co-Founder, Validic

How do you make digital health solutions ubiquitous, and lower the barrier for patients to utilize their own data for better outcomes? In his inspiring keynote talk, Validic’s Drew Schiller said it’s all about making healthcare invisible to the people who use it.

#mHealthatduke is on. First up is @drewschiller, CEO of @validic. "We've been focus on innovation. We must now focus on integration."

— Gary Bennett (@drgarybennett) April 12, 2017

"By utilizing #digitalhealth data & trends, Michael's data was made actionable & his A1C dropped half a point." @drewschiller #mHealthAtDuke https://t.co/W6LIJ6UWNW

— Kristin Sykes (@K10Sykes) April 12, 2017

Time to focus on invisibility in healthcare. Make it a natural part of everyday life. #mhealthatduke

— Tracy Bethel (@TracyDHBethel) April 12, 2017

Is your solution viable?

When determining the viability of a digital health solution, the real question is, is this thing going to thrive? Michael offered a simple matrix for answering this question.

When you think of the need your #digitalhealth product fulfills, you need to anchor it in the end user’s life - Michael Levy #mHealthatDuke

— Smashing Boxes (@smashingboxes) April 12, 2017

@bluedoorhealth's Michael Levy challenges to think about need, people, tech, and e4 impact to bring tech to healthcare. #mhealthatDuke

— Tracy Bethel (@TracyDHBethel) April 12, 2017

Michael Levy: viable #digitalhealth solution has Need+People+Tech+e4 impact (efficient, effective, experience, engagement) #mHealthAtDuke pic.twitter.com/P0n9CJ50FT

— Brian Moynihan (@brian_moynihan) April 12, 2017

Is your solution feasible?

You’ve determined that your product will be able to thrive, but will you be able to pull it off? In this moderated panel, our experts were asked to ponder important feasibility concerns when considering whether to implement a digital health solution.

We use data from patients & providers to determine if #digitalhealth solutions would be beneficial & feasible #mHealthAtDuke pic.twitter.com/O3K6sypXNF

— Kristin Sykes (@K10Sykes) April 12, 2017

Know your community, says Dr. Harriet Burns of @piedmont_hlth. "We can’t forget about the 20% who don’t have smartphones." #mHealthAtDuke

— Smashing Boxes (@smashingboxes) April 12, 2017

Feasibility fails when a solution is focused on one problem without understanding the bigger picture. #mhealthatDuke

— Tracy Bethel (@TracyDHBethel) April 12, 2017

Don't overlook the simple but profound truth: Design for the healthcare MISSION (and not only business case). #mHealthAtDuke

— Jonathan O'Donnell (@jonodoc) April 12, 2017

Is your solution usable?

What sort of experience will the end user have with your solution? And how can you involve them early on to make sure they can use what you’ve developed? Our four presenters were each given roughly seven minutes to the usability principle important to them in digital health.

"Focus on your end user" #digitalhealth #participatory #mHealthAtDuke pic.twitter.com/GosBprKxdd

— Rupa Pereira (@rupapereira) April 12, 2017

.@BATLabUNC on participatory design - include the end users when designing intervention (especially for youth) #mHealthAtDuke @CaDHRI_UNC pic.twitter.com/ySXlTAiVXy

— Brian Moynihan (@brian_moynihan) April 12, 2017

Applying behavioral economics to #mHealthtechnology could offer promising opportunities for use. #mhealthatDuke

— Tracy Bethel (@TracyDHBethel) April 12, 2017

Designing your solutionAndy Hamilton, Director of Design, firstPrototyping was at the core of Andy’s talk on designing your solution. With a low fidelity prototype, you and your users can get their hands on your solution before you’ve already invested too much time and money to change course.

Design’s role is to synthesize the needs of user, business, and implementation - @SirHami1ton #mHealthAtDuke

— Smashing Boxes (@smashingboxes) April 12, 2017

Great tips on UI .. not just for #digitalhealth #mHealthAtDuke pic.twitter.com/nbgJ3Qcaj3

— Rupa Pereira (@rupapereira) April 12, 2017

How do you evaluate your solution?

How do you measure the success of a digital health solution? In this round of 8-10 minute lightning talks, each presenter gave their own perspective based on their own background, experience, and role. From clinical to financial outcomes, engagement and behavioral outcomes, the four speakers demonstrated there are many dimensions to consider measuring to measure success.

#mHealthAtDuke panel on evaluation - @RVilardaga: Fewer than 1% of #digitalhealth apps have been evaluated in randomized control trials

— LittleGreenSoftware (@littlegreensoft) April 12, 2017

"Take a look at your analytics. That’s your users talking to you." @vitalplan's Jon Hudson at #mHealthAtDuke

— Smashing Boxes (@smashingboxes) April 12, 2017

Jon Hudson: Upfront planning is crucial — what data do I need to evaluate success? #mHealthAtDuke #mhealth #digitalhealth #analytics pic.twitter.com/hD7rlK3jFw

— Duke Digital Health (@TheDukeDigital) April 12, 2017

How do you grow your solutions?

Who better to join a panel on product growth than two digital health investors and two co-founders of a successful digital health app? The main themes that arose were based on finding the right people: whether that’s the right market for your product, or strategic investor to help it grow.

Getting capital from the right partners (who get healthcare!) is very valuable to entrepreneurs. - Blake Long @healthecho #mHealthAtDuke

— Smashing Boxes (@smashingboxes) April 12, 2017

Important to consider, who can pay for #mHealth? What should the pay structure look like? #mHealthatDuke

— Tracy Bethel (@TracyDHBethel) April 12, 2017

"We invest in companies, not products." - Blake Long @HealthEcho #mHealthAtDuke #SharkTank

— Smashing Boxes (@smashingboxes) April 12, 2017

Persistence and practice your elevator pitch. Get used to rejection and keep trying. #mHealthatDuke

— Tracy Bethel (@TracyDHBethel) April 12, 2017

Although this year’s mHealth@Duke Conference has come and gone, the ideas and inspiration live on. Check out the #mHealthAtDuke hashtag on Twitter for more highlights from conference participants and attendees.

#mHealthatduke was trending just above #grilledcheeseday. Message?

— Gary Bennett (@drgarybennett) April 12, 2017

Work in healthcare? Download our free ebook for tools and methods to design better healthcare services.

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Smashing Boxes is a creative technology lab that partners with clients, taking an integrated approach to solving complex business problems. We fuse strategy, design, and engineering with a steady dose of entrepreneurial acumen and just the right amount of disruptive zeal. Simply put, no matter what we do, we strive to do it boldly. Let's talk today!

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