Health Care Goes High-Tech
Since the birth of the United States’ GPS satellite network, countless new innovations have been conceived in hopes of making people’s lives safer and more efficient. Parents of teens in our society today have to deal with the insecurity that comes with exponentially greater freedoms enjoyed by their children at a much younger age than in generations past. The utilization of GPS tracking technology as a solution to teen tracking has become one of the most popular niche markets for the application of the GPS satellite network beyond the scope of law enforcement and business logistics. While parents have historically used teen tracking services to track the driving behavior of their teenage drivers, there is a new application that integrates GPS trackers in hopes of making active teens suffering from asthma more aware of what triggers their symptoms and how to avoid those danger zones.
The new system is called Asthmapolis, and its goal is to help asthma sufferers pinpoint areas where pollen, cold air, pet dander, and other asthmatic triggers are most prominent so that they can be easily avoided. The core component of the Asthmapolis infrastructure is a patented GPS tracking device dubbed the Spiroscout, a GPS tracking-enabled cap that can be attached to the tops of many different brands of asthma inhalers. Every time the inhaler is used, the Spiroscout transmits GPS tracking to Asthmapolis’s online software mapping interface, noting the exact location where asthmatic symptoms occurred. Users can choose to have this geographical data sent to their mobile devices, and as the GPS data mounts they can cite areas they usually travel that contain high concentrations of asthmatic triggers.
The idea is that if you find you have to trigger your inhaler around a specific type of tree or at a specific place like around a printer or pet store, you can determine what is triggering the attacks. Asthmapolis has even started aggregating GPS data from multiple asthma sufferers and mapping that information on their website, allowing potential tourists and those unfamiliar with a certain area of a town or city an unparalleled level of insight into where the risks of asthmatic disruption is most likely to occur. If enough users cite the use of their inhalers in a certain place, this system can serve as a public health concern and potential sources of pollution or other disruptions to public well-being can be brought to the attention of local governmental bodies. While parents have traditionally thought GPS-enabled teen tracking devices were limited to the roads, there is no doubt that GPS tracking technology has positive implications on vastly expanding sectors of public health and safety for every age group.