United States: Can Technology-Enabled Home Health Provide Care And Convenience?

Last Updated: March 10 2016
Article by Harry Greenspun

This week we're delighted to share an article written by Harry Greenspun: MD, Director – Deloitte (US) Center for Health Solutions. In his 'My Take', Harry explores the potential for consumers to adopt new technologies which bring healthcare closer to home:

I embrace technology to the point that my home mirrors the International Space Station. I can remotely adjust its systems, assess its inhabitants (both two- and four-legged), and order supplies that are unlikely to be obtained if not delivered right to my house.

Whether driven by convenience, cost, or safety, all of these capabilities have been transformative. I can set or adjust elaborate temperature zones, lock or unlock doors, control alarms and appliances, and see who my dog Tarot is barking at. I also can tell when people arrive and leave and locate my kids.

The house isn't the only thing I monitor – I can also assess my family's health. All of us have wearable devices that monitor our exercise, providing extensive data on routes and performance. Even Tarot has one, helping us determine if he has had enough activity during the day to sleep well at night. Groceries and other household goods get delivered on schedule based upon our historic usage, which helps us make better eating decisions the more we order healthy food.

All of these innovations have given us a level of insight and capability we could not have imagined even a few years ago. At the same time, each raises privacy concerns.

So why do we do it? Because we get something out of it.

As technology continues to advance, an increasing number of health care services traditionally provided in a hospital or physician's office will be available in the home. One question remains, "How quickly will consumers adapt and accept new technologies that bring care into their home?" This is the question the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions explored in Technology-enabled home health: Are consumers ready? Through a series of focus groups, our researchers sought to better understand consumers' opinions about health care outside of traditional settings and the technology that may support bringing it into the home.

The study looked at consumers' views of using tech-enabled home health solutions to manage chronic conditions, including self-care, clinical data transmission, interaction between healthy or unwell patients and their care teams, and personalized reminders about diet and exercise. In general, consumers are optimistic about using technology to facilitate home health care.

However, consumers raised some concerns about how technology tools would affect their privacy. Less-intrusive sensors that offer benefits, like stove burner controls or fall detection, are welcome. But, sensors that monitor an individual's sleep quality, motion patterns at home, or bathroom usage face more resistance. After participants discussed and learned about some of the clinical justifications for these sensors, many of those who opposed often reconsidered their original views.

As more care moves to self-care, consumers want to have influence and control over their health information and journey. The consumers we talked to seemed to have sophisticated opinions about using technology-enhanced tools to promote healthy living. They saw benefits and risks from technology-enabled self-care in the four broad categories of nutrition, physical activity, prevention, and dealing with an acute episode.

For example, the participants in the focus groups generally favored the concept of ready-to-cook ingredients for healthy meals. Like me, many people find themselves without the time to plan meals, go to the store to find all of the ingredients, and then prepare them at home. Most people would prefer to eat healthier, and many like the idea of making it easier and more convenient to do that.

Many of the participants felt positively about using devices to monitor physical activity. However, some consumers, particularly women and individuals age 45-64, often feel discouraged after seeing how they compare to others. Using health coaches to encourage the use of preventive services like vaccines and health screenings received mixed reviews from the focus groups. Some of our respondents said they would find it helpful, while others said they would feel like they just got another person that would nag them about things they already knew they should be doing.

Finally, when managing acute needs, many of the participants liked the idea of using telemedicine options – particularly when traveling. A few expressed concerns about not knowing the credentials of a new telemedicine doctor and said they would rather use telemedicine services through a doctor they already had a developed relationship with.

Though consumers are open to adopting new technology, they have some reservations. Successful technology-enabled home health care may depend on sustained consumer and provider engagement. Companies interested in moving into home health will need to acknowledge the personal nature of health care and work to improve communication between stakeholders (i.e., share fitness and home-monitoring data with providers), acknowledge the evolving models of care teams, and note that different consumer segments use technology differently and that consumer engagement will be key to success in the home health model.

As I get older, I expect to leverage technology to support my health in the same way that I use it now to support my home and fitness. Through biosensing wearables and other in-home monitoring devices, I hope to have a clear view into changes in my health and enjoy tools that support me in caring for any condition I might have, automate scheduling, and deliver necessary drugs and services. And, as the nature of the information being shared becomes more personal, I will also expect a much higher level of care and convenience in order to make the privacy trade-off worthwhile.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Related Topics
Related Articles
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Registration (you must scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions