Digital Health Science Digest: Issue 3

Posted | Posted in Digital Health Science Digest

The Digital Health Science Digest is a bimonthly newsletter compiled by Duke Digital Health. We bring you the most interesting research publications, policy news, and other fun digital health science stuff.

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Issue 3



  • A new initiative, Wearables for Good, led by UNICEF and ARM (a British chip design company) wants to bring the “Internet of Things” to the poor around the world. They are launching with a wearables design challenge, open until August 4th. 

  • A Philadelphia-based startup called Fitly unveiled a  SmartPlate” designed to help users manage portion control through built-in cameras and sensors. It launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $100,000 to bring theplate to market.

  • MyFitnessPal is rolling out its first premium (paid) tier. Available for $9.99/month, it allows users to customize their tracking dashboard. Instead  of having to track everything, it allows users to choose the nutrients they’re most interested in. 

  • This article about how to get in shape using apps features a quote from a journal article by our Center’s fearless leader, Dr. Gary Bennett and our wonderful colleague, Dr. Sherry Pagoto. 


  • Congress is debating the 21st Century Cures Bill. It will, among other things, raise funding for NIH by $10 billion. Some of that funding will leverage big data and analytics to help find cures. It looks set for passage, with strong bipartisan support, but not without some debate over big data and whether patient privacy is sufficiently protected. 

  • The President joined Twitter! Tweet @POTUS to ask for NIH funding increases, net neutrality, and all your other #digitalhealth policy requests! 

  • The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation announced a new $25 million initiative to “broaden health research.” Its goal is to accelerate an evidence base, policy analyses, and societal & health systems analyses related to building a Culture of Health.  

  • As you may have heard, we hosted Lana Moriarty, the Director of Consumer eHealth at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT at HHS, last month. ICYMI, here is a video of her talk



  • Upcoming Event: Triangle Startup Weekend, June 12-14. This year’s theme is TrailBlazers! 

  • More videos from this year’s mHealth@Duke Conference are up! Check them out on our blog

  • Since we’re always stressing over trying to get high engagement rates, here is a fun story about an extreme digital health engager!
  • …and here is another one

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