MITRE uncovered innovation intel while strengthening AARP’s inaugural CES AgeTech Summit

MITRE experts Meredith Benedict and Kathy Kim contributed to the AARP’s inaugural CES AgeTech Summit in January, 2023. Each answers questions about their experience at the event and key takeaways.

Meredith Benedict

Meredith Benedict: MITRE Labs at CES 

How did our collaboration with AARP at CES impact MITRE’s work? 

MITRE Engenuity is a member of AARP’s AgeTech Collaborative, which is focused on technology entrepreneurs, but AARP also has a project called Livable Communities which includes a framework about the eight domains of livability. Similarly, we’ve been trying to broaden the lens for MITRE’s healthy aging work beyond digital health, to also include Smart Cities, which brings to the table technology, planning and impacts related to transportation, emergency preparedness and resiliency of communities. 

As a member of the AgeTech Collaborative and the resources on AARP website, MITRE can access relationships, research and insights that help us contextualize what is happening in industry and where challenges are, for example for startups in accessing testbeds and scaling, and discern where MITRE’s capabilities can be brought forward in a differentiated way. MITRE came to CES 2023 to explore how to be a bridge between the government and industry, since it’s important for our government sponsors to stay informed of industry trends. We shaped our discovery around three capability areas: co-design, Grand Challenges and cybersecurity. 


What other impacts did our CES presence inspire? 

When I was preparing to be a speaker at CES, Brendan, Kathy and I met with a consultant who had been engaged by AARP to help them determine who should appear on their CES stage. During our meeting, I described collaborating with MITRE’s Smart Cities Lab and the consultant mentioned the organization Leading Cities, a nonprofit based out of Boston that aims to drive resiliency and sustainability for all by cultivating a global network of cities that share advanced research, trends and technologies. She is a board member of the organization, and connected me with Michael Lake, the CEO. We have subsequently met on several calls, and I invited two Leading Cities AcceliCity startups to be on health panels at the Jan. 2023 MITRE Smart Cities Summit.  

On January 27, we met in the MITRE Bedford office with leadership of Leading Cities and the Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative to further introduce and discuss MITRE capabilities and potential avenues for collaboration. MITRE’s Bridging Innovation program, which aims to showcase MITRE’s capabilities and how we want to work, took a lead in organizing this meeting with me. The connection with and awareness of Leading Cities probably would never have come about, but for this interaction to prepare for the AARP CES stage.

Earlier in 2022, as Kathy Kim and I explored areas of technology, we had a conversation with the head of the Consumer Tech Association (CTA) Foundation and learned of its relevance to our activities, as it aims improve accessibility in the lives of seniors and also people with disabilities. That exploration generated insight that MITRE’s Diversity and Inclusion group sponsors CTA Foundation’s Accessibility Roundtable at CES and fostered new internal MITRE relationships (Heba Mahmoud, Michael Weiss) that we able to bring full circle with ME’s planning for CES. Aligning parallel MITRE Engenuity AARP AgeTech and MITRE aging and accessibility engagements with CTA and CTA Foundation spawned an integrated MITRE/MITRE Engenuity approach to CES 2023. The result was increased MITRE/MITRE Engenuity visibility throughout the event on various stages. Also new cross-MITRE/ME relationships that came from the planning and presence together at CES, appear to be sustaining as MITRE Engenuity and MITRE’s Healthy Aging work continues 



Kathy Kim: Fostering community connections 

What issues are you addressing re: connecting medical devices? 

When folks are at home and have connected devices, we’re getting information we need, but when they leave the home, we try to find out how can we continue getting that information. I see three settings that need to be integrated:  

  1. Where Healthcare is provided, the hospital or the clinic where people live.  
  2. The home, whatever the setting is for home. It could be an institutional setting, a private residence, or even the streets.  
  3. The neighborhood. 

We also have to decide what information goes back to the providers, since they can’t manage endless streams of data. 


How did you discuss this integration at CES? 

We argued that achieving integration of settings will require resources from across all of MITRE. Our conversation wasn’t solely focused on MITRE labs or the health FFRDC. At the CES smart health panel we brought up findings from MITRE Engenuity’s 5G Summit, since getting information when people leave the home requires an understanding of network infrastructure in the community. The panel also discussed information we had learned from the Smart Cities panel.  


How is MITRE addressing the settings integration? 

On the ACTIVATE program we focus on rural environments. We look at remote patient monitoring of patients in their home who have diabetes and hypertension and connect them to their provider, most often the rural community health centers. MITRE developed a platform to achieve this connection and we’ve implemented it in four Community health centers.  

We have patients that are using devices in their home and health centers that are managing the data as it comes through and doing interventions with the patients. Health coaches are interacting with the patients and then they’re doing telehealth visits. We’re using that to really improve management of chronic disease. 


Kathy Kim

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