October 12th, 2011 by Christian Seebode

The following article caught my attention

http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1108040

Creating appropriate products for low-resource settings requires not only a rethinking of what is considered a health technology, but also cross-disciplinary innovation and in-depth understanding of the particular needs of each country. Location-specific needs assessment will help ensure that more appropriate devices reach people in need and will support parallel efforts to deploy novel devices, processes, or information technologies to cost-effectively reduce disease incidence. It will also help to prevent the adoption of ineffective or inappropriately costly technologies that could divert resources from other critical health care areas.hospital

Exactly. Despite all good that is delivered by device centered health technology it is a big source of unequality because it means expensive development. Lot of money for some improvement that impresses on a tiny scale but fails in a global context. Considering information and the access to it as a health technology that scales up globally is the first step in rethinking health technolgy and its impact to societies. The power of information is that it is flexible. Access is not cheap however, but it inherently contains the notion of distribution. Cost effective health technology needs careful asessment in different contexts (see also: http://patient-centered-it.com/2010/04/10/the-economic-value-of-patient-centered-it/).

At the same time i subscribe to the idea of reverse innovation which is capable to tell the first world what is really a necessary health technology. Again information technology is able to provide the infrastructure to enable this process …

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