Balancing Innovation and Compliance: HealthTech Lawsuits and Workplace Wellness

Balancing Innovation and Compliance: HealthTech Lawsuits and Workplace Wellness

In the pre-digital age, healthcare professionals were forced to input patient details manually.

However, there was no cohesive communication between departments, sometimes resulting in disastrous consequences. Hospitals and physicians found themselves the targets of malpractice lawsuits.

Fast forward to the present, the medical profession faces another challenge as HealthTech becomes an integral part of traditional medicine. 

According to Statista, the HealthTech market is expected to produce a turnover of more than $37 million in revenue by 2024.

The term is loosely defined by the WHO as the application of organized knowledge in the form of medicines, vaccines, devices, systems, and procedures created to improve quality of life.

Balancing innovation with compliance has sometimes proved problematic. The AFFF lawsuit is an example of the interconnectedness of AFFF contamination and HealthTech in addressing workplace safety.

In this article, we’ll look at the link between HealthTech lawsuits and their role in improving workplace well-being.

AFFF Exposure and HealthTech

AFFF (Aqueous Film Forming Foam) is a foam used by firefighters. AFFF firefighting foam was found to contain toxic levels of PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances), known as forever chemicals.

The toxic firefighting foam poses the risk of serious health issues, including testicular cancer and thyroid disease.

Manufacturers were accused of knowing the risks but failed to warn the public about AFFF exposure and PFAS contamination. The result was hundreds of firefighters opening cases to file an AFFF firefighting foam lawsuit.

According to TorHoerman Law, case submissions are currently open as firefighting foam lawyers are still accepting clients for AFFF firefighting foam lawsuits.

So, how does HealthTech fit into the equation and do the pros outweigh the cons?

Digital Health Monitoring

Health surveillance technologies such as wearable devices and health-tracking apps, can help firefighters monitor their health. This includes tracking symptoms from PFAS exposure and observing biomarkers indicating negative health effects.

Digital health surveillance does have its drawbacks. During its review of digital technologies for public health surveillance during the pandemic, the NIH found that privacy was a major issue.  

The U.S. was blasted for its lack of privacy protections and insufficient federal laws around digital surveillance.

MedCity News reported that data privacy still remains a problem for the healthcare sector. Regulatory bodies are constantly issuing warnings to medical organizations that third parties could be unlawfully collecting data from their websites.

In February 2023, the FTC fined GoodRx Holdings $1.5 million for sharing customers’ health data with Facebook and Google without their consent. 

Meta found itself in a similar situation when a HealthTech lawsuit accused the Facebook parent company of using pixel-tracking technology to collect patients’ protected information.

Data Collection

Data collection facilitated by HealthTech includes gathering data from individuals exposed to PFAS. The information could enable large-scale epidemiological studies. The research may prove invaluable evidence in legal cases of AFFF contamination. 

HealthTech companies have a moral obligation to protect their consumers and ensure digital health practices match proper standards of care. Unfortunately, some companies don’t toe the line. 

The Unicorn Cerebral case is a cautionary tale for HealthTech firms. Under investigation by three U.S. agencies, Cerebral was probed for the alleged violation of the Controlled Substance Act. 

The company was accused of over-prescribing ADHD medication without making informed decisions using their patient data records. This led to the termination of its controlled prescription program. Patients were still left reeling after being billed despite canceling their subscriptions.

Public Awareness

While HealthTech is primarily focused on human health, some applications can support environmental monitoring efforts. 

Solutions such as measuring PFAS levels in soil, water, and air are crucial for assessing contamination levels. 

One company has developed software to produce data that can be assessed against the latest PFAS regulations. A chemtech firm announced a PFAS-free molecular sticky material which is safer for the environment, and more stable for storage.

HealthTech’s Role in Workplace Wellness

Transformative technology is making strides in the workplace. The AFFF lawsuit may have highlighted the need for employee wellness in all sectors. 

Wearable devices, telemedicine apps and virtual reality are finding comfortable spaces in physical and mental well-being practices. Data is king. If used for good, imagine how it could aid in the proactive management of employee wellness.

By embracing digital technology, employers can create safer and more fruitful work environments. Striking a balance between innovation and regulations mitigates legal risks and fosters a culture of trust and accountability.

Also, engaging stakeholders helps HealthTech firms anticipate legal issues, reduce risks, and create solutions.

The AFFF lawsuits address environmental contamination and associated health risks from PFAS exposure. HealthTech can complement these efforts by providing tools for health monitoring, data analysis and public education.



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