Expert Insights on Connected Health in 2016

The Connected Health Experience has evolved and expanded over the years, due to emerging wireless and connected technologies. HIMSS spoke with John Sharp to gain his expert insight on the role of Connected Health in 2016. He shares his visions—the primary challenges, trends and changes in healthcare this year!

What is one of the primary challenges facing healthcare leaders today?

There are many. One challenge I deal with daily is patient engagement. While it has been incentivized by Meaningful Use, there is still confusion about what constitutes meaningful patient engagement. It is not just a patient portal, but it is inviting patients to participate actively in their care. This means having their health data available to them through a portal or app, help learning how to use the portal, and the meaning of medical terms (health literacy). Also, engaging patients in behavior change is the biggest part of this challenge since lifestyle change is difficult to accomplish.

John Sharp

Senior Manager
Personal Connected Health Alliance


What emerging trend do you see in your area of health IT in the next year?

Digital health/Connected health will see continued strong growth, scoring $4.3 billion in 2015 funding, including consumer engagement tools, personal health tools and tracking. Source


What is the most exciting change that you foresee happening in healthcare in the next year? In the next five years?

Telemedicine will become common practice and could outpace in-person visits with a physician in 5 years. In the next year, telemedicine including e-visits/video visits will take place both from home and retail settings like pharmacies at a faster pace. Technology barriers are coming down and many medical devices can now be attached to smart phones to transmit information enabling much of a doctor’s visit to take place remotely. The benefits to patient health outcomes, satisfaction and cost savings will continue to be demonstrated.


Find out more about how technological advances and increased access to mobile and wireless technologies help support patient engagement, self-health management and prevention strategies. At HIMSS16, you’ll explore technical, workflow and adoption challenges and success stories; new technology-enabled care models; connectivity between personal health technologies and EHRs; and the plethora of wellness and care environments.

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