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Trends in clinical research: Use of wearables

Technological innovation and wearables are now transforming the specialized field of health.

The numerous technological options available are revolutionizing the areas of research, medical care, and patient monitoring.

New technology is bringing huge advantages to this field. Public and private health organizations, as well as doctors and patients, are able to reap significant benefits from this development.

In the case of clinical trials, patients’ use of wearables, such as cell phones or smartwatches, assist in monitoring and make communication between the patient and the medical team easier, facilitating more detailed information in real time.

The Association of Clinical Research Organizations (ACRO), headquartered in Washington D.C., compiled a survey on the prevalence of new technology in clinical trials. One of its conclusions was that digital technology and social media are enhancing the efficacy of clinical trials and patient experience.

This association, along with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), present ongoing projects on the benefits afforded by using new technology in clinical trials.

Wearables improve access to information and lessen work times

Benefits start from the get go as the use of this technology facilitates the recruitment of patients wishing to take part in trials, providing their fast and convenient access to information or simply helping to attract the interest of those keen to take part.

The definitive addition of wearable technology to clinical trials would help in the monitoring of reports, digital compilation of reports, and real time data analysis, among other advantages.

Information would be accessible, making consultations quicker and easier, time invested would be far less and all of this would lead to a direct benefit for clinical trial laboratories, as the decrease in the time needed to conduct a trial would also lead to savings in trial costs.

Although this advance is highly significant, there are still certain barriers impeding its definitive roll out; one such barrier is the persistent insecurity felt toward this kind of device by parts of the population who are less technologically-minded.

Data protection and privacy remain a concern. To overcome this barrier, it is essential to provide suitable information and the definitive roll out of this technology in clinical practice.

The use of new technology increases the need to engage specialized translation services

The use of new technology, globalization, and the ongoing need to search for information on the internet means it is essential for those providing this information to make sure it is available, accurately rendered, in a variety of languages. This undoubtedly makes it necessary for the medical industry to engage specialized translation services. This is the only way for a patient to be able to undertake certain clinical procedures without their native language or country being a barrier.

Today’s technological progress seems unstoppable and represents progress in terms of culture, the economy and society on a global scale. Adapting to these changes is vital if we are to succeed in a variety of different fields.