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Innovative Technology

Personal intelligent technologies enable self-quantification and modification of individual health and behavior. Examples include wearable tracking devices, embeddable sensors, and diagnostic testing. When combined with principles of behavioral economics that incentivize and nudge individuals into making healthier decisions, personal intelligent technology can address leading chronic disease risk factors. Nonetheless this application of technology may risk invasion of personal privacy and breaches of data confidentiality. Ensuring its safe uptake at scale necessitates a framework that evaluates ethical, social, and legal implications, akin to the Human Genome Project’s Ethical, Legal and Social Implications Research Program.

The Vitality Institute is engaged in evaluating leading practices and process to overcome ethical, legal, and social concerns associated with personalized health technology. It is also exploring methods to most effectively integrate health promotion and disease prevention with personal intelligent technologies.

The Evidence

Wearable Devices as Facilitators, Not Drivers, of Health Behavior Change

Mitesh S. Patel, MD, MBA, MS1; David A. Asch, MD, MBA; Kevin G. Volpp, MD, PhD Ref: JAMA. 2015;313(5):459-460. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.14781. This Viewpoint discusses issues that prevent wearable medical devices from effectively bridging the gap between recording information and changing health-related behavior.... More »

JAMA | Feb. 3, 2015

Do Workplace Health Promotion (Wellness) Programs Work?

Authors: Goetzel, Ron Z. PhD; Henke, Rachel Mosher PhD; Tabrizi, Maryam PhD, MS; Pelletier, Kenneth R. PhD, MD (hc); Loeppke, Ron MD, MPH; Ballard, David W. PsyD, MBA; Grossmeier, Jessica PhD, MPH; Anderson, David R.... More »

Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine (JOEM) | September 2014

6. The Battle Against Tobacco is not Over but There are Innovative Solutions (Webinar Series)

David Abrams (Legacy) and Mark Cunningham-Hill (Johnson and Johnson)

Watch Past Webinar | February 18, 2015 | 2-3pm ET

New Opportunities in the Changing Landscape of Prevention

By Derek Yach and Chris Calitz The focus of medical research has historically been on curative medicine, yielding better drugs, medical devices, and clinical procedures. Prevention science—the systematic application of scientific methods to the causes... More »

JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) | July 17, 2014

Improving Support for Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Prevention: Summary of Key Messages from Reports of the Institute of Medicine

Leigh Carroll and Bridget B. Kelly, Editors   This paper was commissioned by the Vitality Institute, an organization with a mission to advance knowledge about the evolving science and art of chronic disease prevention and... More »

Institute of Medicine (IOM) | June 18, 2014

Can E-Cigarettes Help You Quit Smoking?

Quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do for your health, but it's also one of the most difficult. There are myriad smoking cessation products available, from the patch to medications and... More »

US News | May 21, 2014

Research to stop tobacco deaths

by Derek Yach, Angela Pratt, Thomas J Glynn and K Srinath Reddy Abstract In 2003, governments adopted the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the world’s first global health treaty. In the decade since the treaty was... More »

Globalization and Health | May 21, 2014