Emma Hardy, our volunteer-lead for this event, does a thorough recap, just in case you missed it 🙂
Modern-day job roles across industries are becoming increasingly reliant on technology and the field of healthcare is no different. On April 10th, One HealthTech invited a panel of fantastic female speakers to discuss how MedTech and HealthTech innovations are shaping the skill sets required by healthcare practitioners and comment on what is being done to enthuse, educate and train individuals to harness these technologies effectively. The event was kindly sponsored by Instinctif Partners and hosted at their offices in the City of London.
Collette Johnson, Alliance Manager at Bespak, kicked-off the evening with great enthusiasm. Collette exposed the difficulties of securing approval for new technologies and pointed out that companies are tending to turn towards working with clinical trial organisations, health insurers, pharmacists and med tech companies directly rather than the NHS. On a global scale, regions with remote areas such as the US, Australia and Scandinavian countries are seeing the greatest benefits, which are driving traction and market growth.
Ishani Patel, Executive GP and Co-founder of Lantum, presented a highly informative talk bursting with eye-opening statistics. Ishani spoke of ways to get more tech-savvy professionals into the healthcare system. She titled this task as the ‘Mother of all Adaptive Problems’ since it is a problem that requires people themselves to change; this means that the people are both the problem and the solution. In order to address this, Ishani advised that leadership, regulation, change management and digital skills are some of the key areas to focus on.
Julie Bretland, Founder of Our Mobile Health focused on why the adoption of new technology in clinical practice is challenging, with a specific angle on the world of apps. Julie highlighted the realities of this market by pointing out that in the UK Medical Category, a total of 7 million app downloads generates £2.7m of download revenue, with the top-selling medical apps bringing in £100k and health app being £2.1m. Evidently, it is a challenging market to conquer, but with the increase of wearable technologies and the prevalence of smartphones, it is one that has great potential. This will require an increase in awareness, understanding, trust and confidence.
Joanna Ashby wrapped up the first part of the night by offering her insight into the current-day medical school curriculum. As a budding medic at Glasgow University, Joanna was best placed to discuss whether medical school really does prepare you to become a tech-savvy doctor! Joanna said this is best achieved in a number of ways; being proactive about your decisions as a medical student, being informed, making the most of elective opportunities, engaging in research trials and being open-minded about where you choose to study. In other words, Joanna advised that if you want to be a super-clued-up medic, don’t forget to consider other avenues such as hackathons, online coding courses and MedTech/HealthTech programmes to acquire and develop such skills.
After hearing from each speaker, the dynamics shifted into a panel discussion hosted very confidently by our Chair, Elizabeth Cairns, Medtech reporter at EP Vantage. To maintain focus whilst ensuring adequate breadth, the panel was presented with three pre-crafted real-world clinical scenarios that touched on the prospects of AI robots taking charge of surgical procedures, the positives and concerns of online consultations and the huge potential of collecting and interpreting patient data in the right way… a solid 30 minutes of elite brain exercise for sure! With more than 15 years of experience in monitoring medtech, biotech and pharmaceutical sectors, Elizabeth drew upon her knowledge and observations to pose fresh, well-considered questions and prompted audience engagement – of which we were delighted to say that there was plenty!
The evening wrapped up with pitches from budding early stage projects: Anni Mekhail (Isogonal), Agnieszka Kazimierczak (Health Monitoring Online) and Zeinab Ruhomauly (Centrality Health). It was great to hear about their exciting new ideas and we wish them all the best with their growth and development!