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Wearables will be the Next Big Trend for Healthcare

The Market for portable healthcare device is expanding rapidly. According to the most recent forecast data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker, vendors shipped a total of 19.6 million healthcare wearable units in 2014. By 2019, total shipment volumes are forecast to reach 126.1 million units, resulting in a five-year compound annual growth rate of 45.1%.

We will continue to see this growth in the years to come. The increasing healthcare costs and aging population are the fertile soil for the medical use of wearables.

eMedCert summarized a list of 10 statistics about healthcare wearables:

  • The annual smart wearable healthcare market volume will grow from $2 billion in 2014 to $41 billion in 2020, a compound annual growth rate of 65%.
  • By 2018, 70% of healthcare organizations worldwide will invest in consumer-facing technology including apps, wearables, remote monitoring and virtual care.
  • Wearable technology could drop hospital costs by as much as 16% over the course of 5 years, and remote patient monitoring technologies could save our healthcare system $200 billion over the next 25 years.
  • Over 80% of consumers said an important benefit of wearable tech is its potential to make healthcare more convenient.
  • 88% of physicians want patients to monitor their health parameters at home.
  • 68% of consumers would wear employer-provided wearables streaming anonymous data to an information pool in exchange for lower health insurance costs.
  • The wearable band market grew by 684% on a worldwide basis in the first half of 2014 compared with the first half of 2013.
  • Today, 1 in 5 American’s own some type of wearable technology.
  • 82% of wearable users believe that wearable tech has enhanced their lives.
  • 76% of consumers say they would NOT need their wearable device to replace an existing piece of technology in order to justify its purpose.

Medical wearables can be used for early detection of disease, health monitoring and rehabilitation support through to telediagnosis. Particularly in the field of early detection can lead to significant cost savings. The top 5 healthcare wearable devices currently available in the market are:

  • Eyewear – glasses
  • Wearable cameras
  • Smartwatchs
  • Tokens, clip-ons and jewellery
  • Wristbands

CCS Insight created the following infographic to show the wearables forecast.

CCS_WW_wearables_forecast_August2014_s

(click the image to see the original infographic )

The potential of these smart wearable devices can be clearly seen. The big question is not necessarily when all this will happen, but whether it actually leads to the expected effects.

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