Healthcare Technology Featured Article

August 22, 2014

Wearable Intelligence Lands Healthy Sum to Turn Google Glass Medical

A key point being rapidly discovered about the Google Glass is an increasing dichotomy in terms of public perception. When regular people wear Google Glass, it's often taken negatively, as evidenced by the growing slew of bars, restaurants, movie theaters and other places set to ban the device for use in said locations. But when professionals use Google Glass, it's taken much more positively, a way for business users and others to get needed information rapidly and simply. The medical field has proven a huge boon for Google Glass, and Wearable Intelligence recently distinguished itself in a move to raise substantial funds to help Google Glass make the jump to medicine more fully.

Wearable Intelligence is a company that focuses on developing software for wearable data presentations, specifically for those in the energy industry and healthcare as well. A recent filing from the Securities and Exchange Commission shows that the company was out to raise $8.4 million in venture capital to get its operations up and running. So far, it's reached $7.9 million of that, at last report, and has been working on it since August 6, 2014, backed up by several firms including Andreessen Horowitz, Google Ventures, First Round and others.

What is Wearable Intelligence looking to do with all that capital? Reports suggest that the company has a bit of software in mind that will allow for clinical data to be quickly displayed on Google Glass, which can include data from electronic health records (EHR) systems. Additionally, however, the system will be able to display vitals data in real time, as well as clinical alerts and error notices.

That's the ultimate value of Google Glass right there; the ability to put large quantities of data right in front of a user's face. For most personal users, that doesn't work out so well, especially given that ability to record that Google Glass packs in. But the same technology that can easily show a user how to get from Point A to Point B on foot the fastest can quickly display information about a gallbladder surgery in progress, along with notations about medicine allergies displayed during the surgery. It doesn't need to stop there, either. It can also provide most everything a standard medical chart would, and right in the user's field of view, meaning that paper charts may no longer be necessary in light of this. Doctors could be rapidly notified about location changes—potentially even guided directly to the room in question via the same tools that allow for navigation—for patients, be quickly on-boarded into a new hospital, and even be notified about new lab results available.

There are a lot of options that a medically-driven Google Glass could provide, and the Wearable Intelligence fund raising effort shows just how many of these could ultimately become reality. There's likely to be many more to come after this, of course, and the end result is likely to mean some very exciting things for many occupations' future. Only time, of course, will tell what it all looks like, but it should be a very big deal nonetheless.

Edited by Alisen Downey

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