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Chris Van Hoof    
   

 

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CHRIS VAN HOOF, HOLST CENTRE / IMEC / KU LEUVEN
DIRECTOR WEARABLE HEALTH SOLUTIONS / IMEC FELLOW / PROFESSOR

Chris Van Hoof leads imec’s wearable health R&D across 3 imec sites (Eindhoven, Leuven and Gent). Imec’s wearable health teams provide solutions for chronic-disease patient monitoring and for preventive health through virtual coaching. Chris likes to make things that really work and apart from delivering industry-relevant qualified solutions to customers, his work resulted in 5 imec startups (4 in the healthcare domain). After receiving a PhD from the KU Leuven in 1992 in collaboration with imec, Chris has held positions as manager and director in very diverse fields (sensors, imagers, 3D integration, MEMS, energy harvesting, body area networks, biomedical electronics, wearable health). He has published over 600 papers in journals and conference proceedings and has given over 70 invited talks. He is full professor at the KU Leuven.

 

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Presentation abstract

DIGITAL PHENOTYPING FOR PERSONALIZED BEHAVIOR CHANGE

Between 70% and 85% of the healthcare budget in OECD countries is spent treating chronic patients. Yet, behavior and lifestyle are at the root cause of nearly 80% of these chronic diseases and they are at least in principle preventable. Generic measures to achieve behavior change have proven to be not successful. Giving advice that is not timely or not actionable, and is applicable to the average person leads to low compliance of the individual user. Exactly because we are all different, and evolve over time, a key to success will be achieving personalization well beyond what is offered by today’s wearables and APPs. To achieve such personalization, we are creating digital phenotyping methods, which combine vast personal physiological information, smartphone information and contextual information to learn individual behavior as well as habits and triggers. Based on this information, patterns and clusters of different personas will emerge through unsupervised learning. These will be the basis for giving the right actionable recommendations to the right person at the right time. Such highly perceptive and just-in-time feedback contrasts with today’s mainly time-based recommendations that are at best location aware and are not based on longitudinal nor personal physiological data.

Although the domain of preventive health is vast and diverse, we are currently exploring three pilot applications: personalized stress detection and management (for healthy people as well as patients), smoking cessation and eating behavior. For each application, in our living labs we conduct large-scale (i.e. 1000 persons), long-term (weeks or months) trials to account for the variability among people and over time. This research brings together multidisciplinary imec expertise and leverages clinical collaborations with psychiatrists, behavioral scientists and psychologists.

 

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