Category : Innovation Story

Innovation Spotlight: eCaring


heir unique cloud-based system integrates significant behavioral, clinical and medication adherence data to manage and monitor seniors and people with chronic conditions.

Innovation Spotlight: Tom McInerney, CEO of Genworth Financial


For millions of people across the US, Genworth provides financial security and protection through long term care funding solutions. Long term care can be expensive, and at least 70% of people over 65 will need long term care services and support at some point in their lives.



Why is frog Design participating in 2016?

Several years ago, frog made “Aging by Design” a point of focus in the work we do in healthcare. What began as a frog passion project to design solutions that would promote longer and more enjoyable lives for our own aging parents and grandparents, eventually grew into a global research and design initiative that identified insights, opportunities, and guiding principles for designing new products and services for the aging global population.

We’re excited to share some of this work at this year and look forward to learning from the wide range of other industry leaders who are participating in this year’s conference.

Tell us your disruptive innovation story. What are you working on that will change the game for healthcare and Aging Americans?

Our “Aging By Design” research and design work has led to a range of opportunities to participate in and facilitate on-going discussions with organizations who are thinking creatively about designing valuable and meaningful experiences for the aging population – including AARP, Aging 2.0, HealthXl, StartUp Health and many of our clients in the payer, provider, device and services industry. Our newest, most exciting recent “disruptive innovation” is the Design Collaborative partnership with Pfizer’s Consumer Health Group. Within this partnership we are integrating Pfizer strategists and technical, commercialization, and manufacturing realization specialists directly into our home studio design teams of ethnographic researchers, strategists, visual, interaction and design technologists, to collectively identify and define new consumer products and services.

What do you see as the single most untapped opportunity in healthcare today? (e.g. wearables, telemedicine, policy, etc.).

Within the healthcare practice at frog, we engage with a broad set of health and wellness-related companies and organizations. The massive challenge of relieving the burden of chronic conditions on the healthcare system is a constant conversation. Though the causes of these conditions – obesity, COPD, diabetes, cancer, etc. – are clearly multi-faceted and often socio-complex in nature, we believe that technology-supported behavior change solutions will make it easier to manage them or perhaps head them off completely.

Pushing this idea a bit towards provocation, we’re incredibly excited to see today’s problem-solving approach to “healthcare” becoming a more proactive and dynamic model of “wellness management”. In this model, we imagine using many technologies – from inexpensive and low-friction biosensors, personal genomics, biomarkers, and the microbiome – to collect and synthesize new types of periodic and real-time health diagnostic data we own and control. Intelligent systems will be able to more quickly and precisely baseline our health, and identify outliers in the “big-data” informed patterns, as they emerge. Imagine that these “wellness anomalies” alert on-call “wellness consultants,” who recommend tailored, small and achievable personalized behavior changes to get us back on track before manageable problems develop into the full-blown and costly chronic conditions so many of us struggle with today.

In this near future each of us can more clearly see the connections between our own specific choices and the resulting effects on our health. We have the data, insight, and actions to make informed choices and take on greater responsibility for our own health and wellness.

What do you see as the biggest obstacle to improving healthcare for Aging Americans?

In our research on aging at frog, we unsurprisingly found that the health of Aging Americans is highly dependent on their overall quality of life. Are they eating well, physical mobile, psychologically confident, socially and mentally engaged? The more ‘yes’ answers here, the longer, healthier, and happier are their lives. We also found that a ‘yes’ answer to many of these questions comes when a senior is able to live for as long as possible in their own home – an environment they’ve come to know and feel comfortable in.

However, in this scenario the factors of social and mental engagement are often missing and we see the potential for a generation of shut-ins who miss the social and mental stimulation of their friends. These insights have lead us to look for new approaches to senior living that flip the nursing-home or assisted-living models on their head to provide a self-planned but structured, peer community owned and driven, dynamically responsive DIY approach to later-life-living. This approach, driven by the senior and a close-knit group of their friends and/or family, gives ultimate control of designing a living environment that utilizes aspects of flexible prefabricated housing, progressive needs-based renovation, on-demand services, sensor-driven responsive environments, community responsibility, location and identity driven technology, to name a few.

Together these solutions promote independence and ongoing social engagement, while meeting seniors just-in-time needs to support them as they get older. I’ll talk more about this concept during my Summit talk.

Paint us a picture of the healthcare delivery system for Aging Americans 5 years from today?

Categorically, aging Baby Boomers will redefine what it means to be old, and their expectations will drive change and evolution across the health spectrum. A large percentage of Baby Boomers are proactively learning how to take better care of themselves through diet, exercise, mental and social stimulation to live longer, happier, and more fulfilling lives than ever before. Conversely we’re also seeing the largest spikes in Aging Americans with single and co-morbidity of chronic conditions heavily taxing our struggling healthcare system. This growing ‘health gap’ results in a dramatically disproportionate equation of who and how our treatment-driven healthcare services are consumed. Over the next 5 years, frustrated payers will shift healthcare providers to measurable wellness-based compensation models. To regain control over the populations they manage, providers will need to rethink how they can deliver measurable positive outcomes/wellness services. Aging Americans will also be encouraged (via incentive or penalty) to make smarter life-choices that have been proven across populations, to result in happier, healthier (and less costly) lives.

At frog we see huge opportunities to create new, innovative solutions for seniors and the people who care for them. Solutions that encourage better health, more lifelong engagement, clearer understanding and accurate assessment of one’s overall wellbeing, at lower costs to both the consumer and the healthcare system. Not easy – sure – but worthy work, of which we are proud to be a part.

About Drew Miller

[author name=”DREW MILLER” image=”” facebook=”” twitter=”” google=”” linkedin=”” website=”” name_text_color=”#002842″ background=”#ffffff”]

Over the last 7 years at frog, Drew has led numerous projects to bring together the physical and digital worlds to create dynamic and thoughtful user experiences. The products and solutions he delivers strengthen the user’s relationships with both their physical surroundings and the people closest to them through new experiences and innovative uses of technology. Drew has developed ecosystems for Healthcare, the Connected Home, Customer Service and Support, Entertainment Media, Hospitality, and E-Commerce for clients such as Merck, Honeywell, Disney, and AT&T. Drew has Master’s Degrees in Architecture from both MIT and the Savannah College of Art and Design.


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