Report: Growth in Health Wearables Could be Stunted by Cost, Privacy | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Report: Growth in Health Wearables Could be Stunted by Cost, Privacy Concerns

October 21, 2014
by Gabriel Perna
| Reprints
While the adoption of wearable devices is expected to rise, health consumers are still concerned over privacy and cost issues, according to a report. 
The report, from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Health Research Institute (HRI), examines consumer interest and attitude toward wearable health devices. Currently, performance of the devices is not up to consumer expectations. While 20 percent of consumers own a wearable device, 33 percent who bought one more than a year ago say they don't use it any more. 
Further, more than 80 percent of consumers are concerned that wearable technology would invade their privacy. Few consumers, PwC HRI reports, are interested in using wearables to share health data with friends and family because of these privacy concerns. Authors of the report advise manufacturers of these devices to be up front and clear on privacy policies. 
Another potential inhibitor is cost. Instead of paying for devices, consumers say they should be paid for using them. In fact, 68 percent of consumers would wear employer-provided wearables streaming anonymous data to an information pool in exchange for break on their insurance premiums.
The potential, however, is there, according to authors of the report. Vaughn Kauffman, principal, PwC Health Industries, said in a statement: “Wearable data can be used by insurers and employers to better manage health, wellness and healthcare costs, by pharmaceutical and life sciences companies to run more robust clinical trials, and by healthcare providers to capture data to support outcomes-based reimbursement. But it will be critical to address the consumer concerns that we’ve identified, such as cost, privacy, and ease of use."

Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More



Geisinger National Precision Health Hires Illumina Exec to Lead Business Development

Integrated health system Geisinger has hired a high-profile genetic counselor to head up business development for Geisinger National Precision Health, which was created to extend the Geisinger model on the national scene.

$30M VC Fund Launched to Spur Innovation in Cardiovascular Care

The American Heart Association, together with Philips and UPMC, has announced the launch of Cardeation Capital, a $30 million collaborative venture capital fund designed to spur healthcare innovation in heart disease and stroke care.

Epic Wins Labor Dispute in Closely Divided Supreme Court Decision

Epic Systems Corporation won a major labor-law ruling in the Supreme Court on Monday, centering around the extent of corporations’ right to force employees to sign arbitration agreements, and with a 5-4 ruling in its favor

Survey: Two-Thirds of Physician Practices Seeking Out Value-Based Care Consulting Firms

Most physician organizations are not prepared for the move to value-based care, and 95 percent CIOs of group practices and large clinics state they do not have the information technology or staff in-house needed to transform value-based care end-to-end, according to a recent Black Book Market Research.

Cumberland Consulting Buys LinkEHR, Provider of Epic Help Desk Services

Cumberland Consulting Group, a healthcare consulting and services firm, has acquired LinkEHR, which provides remote application support, including Epic help desk services.

Population Health Tool that Provides City-Level Data Expands to 500 Cities

A data visualization tool that helps city officials understand the health status of their population, called the City Health Dashboard, has now expanded to 500 of the largest cities in the U.S., enabling local leaders to identify and take action around the most pressing health needs in their cities and communities.