Search engine colossus Google has joined Continua, the Intel-led international coalition working to develop standards to enable interoperable e-health products and services for the personal health market.
Google unveiled ambitious plans for developing personal health records, with its Google Health initiative earlier this year.
The initial trial involving the Cleveland Clinic allowed Google PHR users to send personal information, at the individual’s discretion, into the clinic record or to pull information from the clinic records into the Google Health personal file.
Continua aims to accelerate the development and adoption of personal health monitoring devices, PHRs and services, has also been joined by Dossia.
Dossia is a US non-profit consortium working with leading employers to provide consumers with personal health records. Dossia members include: Wal-Mart, AT&T, BP America, Cardinal Health, Intel, Pitney Bowes and Sanofi-Aventis.
Dossia and Google, through its Google Health team, are both part of the growing development of PHRs and related personal health systems. They represent two of the most high profile efforts to develop PHRS in the US. Both are working to develop tools and applications that allow secure health information storage and retrieval.
“Google ardently supports the concepts of interoperability, data portability, and open standards, so it was a natural fit for us to join the Continua Alliance,” said Jerry Lin, product manager for Google Health.
Lin added: “Our work with Continua will help us continue to develop integration with various home monitoring devices to ensure that data can be uploaded from these devices and securely stored in Google Health.”
Colin Evans, president and CEO of Dossia, said: “Consumers are ready to adopt healthcare technology, such as personally-controlled health records and home monitoring devices.”
Since its launch in 2006 Continua has grown to include 170 of the world’s leading technology companies, medical and fitness device manufactures, and healthcare organisations and providers. Included among the members is the UK National Health Service’s Connecting for Health agency.
The industry alliance is focused on developing standards in the areas of chronic disease management, independent aging and supporting health and wellness.
Continua will for the first time public ally demonstrate interoperability between Continua certified products and services on October 27 at a US Connected Health event in Boston.
A&D medical, Cambridge Consultants, CyPak, FitLinxx, Google Health, IBM, Intel, National Health Service, Nonin Medical, Oracle, Partners, Philips, Roche Diagnostics, and University Health Network will participate by providing devices and software solutions that support Continua’s soon to be published Version one guidelines and share a common interface.
Information about the Connected Health event can be found at www.connected-health.org