The Phoenix-based initiative Project HoneyBee, from Arizona State University’s Center for Sustainable Health, has developed a database containing more than 200 wearable technologies. By conducting observational clinical trials and pulling in scholarly research on the devices, they are developing new ways to assess not only the devices’ effectiveness, but also how they match up with clinician workflow and patients’ individual needs.
Initially, the Project HoneyBee device database was aimed at helping clinicians. It currently acts as a sort of consultant and intermediary between the clinician and the available technologies. But recently, the HoneyBee Team began thinking about how the initiative might flip the resource’s intended audience, opening it up to patients. In working through this idea, the team saw a positive feedback loop emerge. With access to Project HoneyBee’s database, patients could make more informed decisions about their own health. More knowledgeable patients—and the user feedback they provide—would transform Project HoneyBee’s device database into a novel learning platform that promotes trust and collaborative care between patients and their health care team. To realize this potential, Project HoneyBee needs to develop a public-facing site that would allow patients to dig into the existing database, filter results, and print out recommendations to share with their clinician.