It was the fifth annual WIRED Health conference last week, bringing together technology, science and healthcare.
As a pharmaceutical marketing agency we’re passionate about transformative health, so it was only natural to find us at WIRED Health this year. Not only did it help us keep abreast of where the future of health is heading but also ensured we can continue to provide this insight to our clients on a daily basis.
I heard a lot of interesting opinions – and even more debate. If you missed it then here are the 5 biggest things I took away from the event.
1. ‘Bespoke medication’ is coming our way
One in 17 of us will suffer from a rare disease sometime in our lives. I learned how genomics – in particular CRISPR-Cas9 – aims to reduce this by using bespoke gene-altering technology, unique to our DNA, to eliminate an illness before it takes hold. In short, we’ll have personalised medicine.
2. Who wants to live forever?
Inspiring? Yes, but also a little sinister. Will being able to replace damaged genes with healthy ones mean that one day we’ll all be super humans who live longer and never get ill? A sobering thought.
3. Let the numbers cure us
Verily, Google’s R&D arm, talked about how cold, hard data can determine the causes of disease – and then offer preventative measures. Could this be the cost-cutting, timesaving revolution the NHS has been waiting for?
4. Keeping diabetes in check
One example Verily gave for medical data collection was through using modified, everyday items. So instead of just wearing contact lenses, for example, diabetics would wear adapted contact lenses that could actually read blood glucose levels constantly and warn of, say, hyperglycaemia.
5. Patients, patients, patients
With all of this cutting-edge technology, it’s reassuring to know that it’s still all about the patient. PATIENT FOCUS were the buzzwords I heard a lot. So even with the growth of things like immersive Virtual Reality experiences for rehabilitation, the onus will still be on the end user. As a pharmaceutical marketing agency, it’s good to know that technology hasn’t overtaken humanity. Yet.