Wednesday September 03 2014 09:30 AM
New website provides users with MS a one-stop personal online health centre
A new eHealth website, Pow Health, was officially launched in Ireland today (Wednesday) by Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD. Today’s launch, supported by Multiple Sclerosis Ireland and Teva Pharmaceuticals Ireland (Teva), had a particular focus on people living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) because of Pow Health’s capacity to help those with MS, their carers’ and healthcare professionals better manage their condition and engage with others with MS.
Pow Health is a unique eHealth platform which can help users monitor their condition, symptoms and progress; manage health records; track medications; set personal goals or monitor emotional and physical wellbeing.
For people living with MS, PowHealth.com allows you to manage all your health needs in one place, including tracking your general wellness and long term health condition. Pow Health’s comprehensive health trackers can monitor and record a multiple of relevant areas such as specific treatments and medications, symptoms, lab test results, blood pressure and weight etc. Pow Health is unique in that it provides a one-stop personal online health centre without the need to use individual health trackers from differing sites.
The results and outputs from these trackers can then be shared, reviewed and discussed with healthcare professionals such as neurologists or MS specialist nurses’ during each patient’s healthcare appointments and check-ups. These trackers will ensure that medical professionals will have the most up-to-date and relevant information available to them to assist in making the most informed decisions on behalf of their MS patients.
A recent survey found that almost a third of Irish people living with MS currently engage with others with MS on social networking sites such as Facebook. The survey also found an overwhelming desire amongst people with MS, at 86%, for increased online services to help them better manage their condition and provide greater opportunities to engage with others also impacted by MS.
To address this need, Pow Health offers users a social outlet by allowing both those with MS, their carers’ and family members to engage online with others also living with MS and to share their experiences and insights on the condition, through a variety of chat forums.
Ava Battles, Chief Executive MS Ireland, speaking at the launch noted:
"MS Ireland is delighted to partner with Teva to launch this eHealth platform in Ireland to help people living with MS. Our recent survey showed a strong demand amongst those with MS to have greater online resources and supports, both medical and social. While MS Ireland is already active in engaging with our members and supporters online, Pow Health’s offering will further enhance the supports and services currently available to people with MS by giving them greater individual control over the management of their condition."
Ifty Ahmed, founder and CEO of Pow Health added:
“By encouraging patients to become more efficient at tracking and monitoring changes in their health, doctors can get a more accurate and faster understanding of the patient's experience of their condition and their quality of life. A longer-term perspective of health, from a physical and mental perspective is attainable with the potential to inform the treatment pathway undertaken."
Addressing the specific needs of MS patients, Ahmed continues: “MS is a complex illness that needs a more rounded approach. We found that health management tools do not take a holistic approach to health and simply address a specific need, e.g. a glucose tracker for someone managing diabetes. In the case of patients with MS they may need to manage hypertension or keep a symptom diary to track if particular foods, activities, weather or even their moods affect their symptoms. By allowing people access to all the tools they will ever need, now and in the future, delivered through a consistent and intuitive user-experience, means a smarter and easier way to manage health."