The Internet of Things has become a prominent force in business due to its ability to provide better levels of interconnectivity and data sharing as well as the operational advantages that arise because of it. It allows people to connect with any devices from virtually any location, a feature that has proven to be crucial in the healthcare and medical industry. These industries are focusing on remote patient monitoring (RPM) systems that use healthcare IoT to transform the methods used to provide care and treatment for patients.
RPM systems are designed to provide care using a series of interconnected, home-based devices that are capable of capturing and monitoring data on devices that are connected to the same network. The devices are also integrated with smart sensors that allow healthcare institutions to collect and access several parameters of data and use that data to better informed medical care, all while reducing costs.
The use of IoT in healthcare isn’t exactly a new concept and has already experienced widespread adoption and integration within the US healthcare sector. It has already facilitated massive growth in connected medical imaging technology and by using a variety of related technologies like motion sensors and pacemakers, has created a system that is able to scale machine connectivity and application enablement quite efficiently.
Many forward-thinking hospitals and other medical institutions that have implemented the technology are recording tangible benefits like improved patient outcomes and fewer re-admissions. Additionally, healthcare IoT and remote patient monitoring has been leveraged in a variety of different settings and scenarios with a focus on providing care to remote and otherwise hard-to-reach locations.
Let’s look at five ways IoT in healthcare and remote patient monitoring are working towards improving healthcare and patient outcomes:
1 – Convenience in the medical field plays a significant role in improving efficiency. Due to effortless and near-instant communication capabilities provided by remote care, clinics and other medical institutions can rely on automated systems of scheduling which reduces the need for in-person visits without compromising on doctor-patient facetime.
2 – Timely and accurate monitoring can lead to earlier intervention for patients. It is one of the key benefits of IoT in healthcare. Especially for patients with serious, time-sensitive medical emergencies or illnesses, the extra time provided by continuous monitoring can make a huge difference between life and death.
3 – Accuracy can significantly increase both efficiency and early intervention. An important aspect of healthcare IoT as it uses connected devices to send alerts to doctors using the same intricate GPS network facilitates timely intervention for flagged patient conditions as well as allowing medical professionals to respond quicker and with more information about the patient and their condition during emergencies. This is vital for patients that reside in rural or remote locations.
4 – Safety and security of patient data and information is increased to the sophisticated network protection used by most medical institutions. Patient monitoring facilitates improved physical safety of patients as well as their data records using better tools for fall prevention for patients and improved digital security of patient data. Smaller hospitals regularly implement RPM as a means of upgrading their in-house security and a way to better integrate with EMR and adhere to HIPAA regulations.
5 – Mobility can play a major role in improving patient satisfaction. Nowadays, patients expect to gain access to care using their everyday consumer devices. A trend that has stemmed from the growth and popularity of wearable devices like fitness trackers and mHealth technology. By providing access to healthcare and medical services through the technologies creates a more engaging and easy-to-use experience for patients and plays a major role in ensuring greater levels of patient satisfaction.