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FDA launches Home as a Health Care Hub initiative

The Home as a Health Care Hub initiative aims to advance healthcare-at-home technology to improve health equity.
By admin
Apr 25, 2024, 8:01 AM

What happened

On Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the launch of the Home as a Health Care Hub, a new initiative created to advance healthcare-at-home in the U.S. and improve health equity. 

Why it’s important

During the pandemic, the necessity for healthcare at home soared as hospitals and clinics were overwhelmed, propelling any available technology into use, regardless of its integration or user-friendliness. This often resulted in patients and providers grappling with disparate and complex systems.

The Home as a Health Care Hub initiative is a formal effort to develop safe, secure, and user-friendly healthcare-at-home technology. This push is not only about improving convenience but also about enhancing access to healthcare for disabled patients and those in rural areas, thereby increasing health equity. This initiative aligns with the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health’s (CRDH)commitment to advancing health equity through improved medical technology.

Related article: Health at home raises cybersecurity level

A closer look

The CDRH has partnered with an architectural firm known for its forward-thinking approach to building designs that prioritize health and equity. The collaboration aims to address the diverse needs of various home models by developing tailored solutions that offer flexibility to adapt and expand in complexity and scale. The project involves designing a home prototype enhanced with Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality (AR/VR) capabilities. 

The prototype, which is expected to be completed this year, will serve as an innovation lab that will bring together patients, providers, policymakers, and medical device makers to create ideal healthcare-at-home setups. The initial focus will be on homes in rural and lower-income communities, ensuring that the prototype is intentionally designed to advance health equity. 

Lower-income and rural communities are notoriously plagued with limited broadband access, limited access to transportation to healthcare facilities and healthy food sources, and of course, limited financial means preventing access to healthcare at all. The CDRH did not indicate how they intend to target these communities.

Interested in advancing healthcare-at-home? Join our healthcare-at-home Digital Health Community to explore and discuss the latest trends with experts in the field.

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