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Connected Health Conference 2010

October 22nd, 2010

I had the pleasure to attend the Connected Health Conference this past friday.  The title of the conference was The Way Forward: Reform’s New Focus on Health and Wellness, Independent Aging, Chronic Condition Self-Care and the Tools That Support Them and it was one of the best conferences I’ve attended in a while.  I came away with a number of new ideas to promote behavior change for PhotoCalorie – some of which we’ll roll out shortly, so stay tuned!

Here are some highlights from my notes:

BJ Fogg:

  • Words to live by “put hot triggers in front of motivated people.”  Hot triggers are anything that allows a user to take action – “click now!” vs. billboard that says “drink milk” that you see while you are driving.
  • Start small and then build off your success.  You learn how things work.
  • Formula for behavior change: Behavior = motivation * ability * trigger.  Start with triggers, then ability, and finally motivation.  Motivation is the hardest to address.

Sheena Iyengar and her book The Art of Choosing.

  • People can’t decide when they are presented with more than 7 choices (+/- 2).  They end up doing nothing.
  • Solution is to decrease the number of choices and make the choices clear and meaningful.  A successful choice results in higher user satisfaction and trust.

Kevin Volpp at U. Penn.

  • Economic incentives can be effective to induce behavioral changes but you need to be careful.  In weight loss studies, when the incentive was discontinued people gained the weight back.
  • Lots of discussion about carrot vs. stick approach.  The “stick” approach has not been studied as much mainly because it is riskier for employers since the employees are likely to complain (read: lawsuits).
  • Anticipated regret is another type of motivator.  For example, “You didn’t reach your weight loss goal for this week but if you had you would have won XXX prize.”  This creates a sense of loss and people are more likely to participate next time.

David Rose from Vitality created Glow Caps to improve medication adherence – it’s pretty clever.  Here are his slides.

ANT+ appears to be really nice protocol to connect to all kinds of wireless sensors.  Imagine having your phone communicate with your scale or a sensors on your bike communicate with your computer that track calories burned, power, and distance traveled shown on a map.  ANT’s parent company is Garmin.

Random Facts

  • 30% of people have apps but only 23% use them.
  • 1 out 10 adults didn’t know if they had an app.
  • 1 out 10 users have some type of health app (broadly defined).
  • 50+ age group is the fastest growing social network.  Apps need to be designed for this age group.
  • Obesity costs $73B in lost productivity .
  • Japan has penalties for poor health such as large waist sizes.

Behavior Change, Conference, Dietary Research, Ideas