IoT is transforming the healthcare industry and has tremendous benefits for hospitals, doctors and patients. More and more health care providers are investing in connected wireless systems and sensor-based devices to reduce costs and ensure quality patient care.
The Internet of Things has great potential as a tool for patient safety. Connected devices are installed at the patient’s home, by the bed, or on the wrists of the most vulnerable patients to ensure that their caregivers can be continuously informed.
All this information allows to prevent infections, avoid adverse drug reactions, etc. allowing quality care after the patient’s discharge.
What are some of how health organizations are using the Internet of things to improve the health management of the population for which they are responsible?
Remote monitoring of chronic diseases
The continuous monitoring of patients at home is one of the most immediate benefits that the internet of things offers us. Patients of all ages are familiar with the use of mobile devices connected to the Internet because they use them in many everyday tasks. This allows healthcare organizations to increase their presence in the daily lives of patients without significant training efforts in new technologies.
Advanced healthcare technologies allow close monitoring of inpatient and outpatient care. The telemonitoring (RPM) Allows healthcare professionals to control vital signs and evaluate physical responses to previous treatments without having to be in the same location as the patient. The device used depends on the health status of the respective patient.
For example, it may be an implanted cardiology device, an airflow monitor, or a networked blood glucose meter. The method in question collects the desired data. If the values are not as they should be, the data is simultaneously forwarded to a database for collection and to the attending physician.
Customized treatment plans
The IoT provides additional ways for health care providers to gather a wealth of data. Integrated sensor beds can monitor vital signs and upload results in real time to the hospital’s database. And with patient telemonitoring, doctors can even provide continuity of care and look after their patients after they leave the hospital.
Outside of the hospital or clinic, portable, sensor-based devices can be used to check data such as blood glucose, blood pressure, and heart rates of vulnerable patients. As the population ages, more and more people will be chronically ill, and IoT assisted housing could become a viable option.
Taking advantage of new wearables devices such as smartwatches
One example is the appearance of the Apple Watch, in the market, there are many other, but we cannot forget that lately, Apple has been an expert in popularizing new mobile technologies. Much of these technologies will be controlled by advanced systems that will need professional JD Edwards support to maintain the system and improve the overall experience for users.
The smartwatch has been around for a few years but has found a place in the healthcare industry thanks to the Health Kit and Research Kit projects powered by Apple. The professionals have seen great possibilities for data analysis since the March announcement of Research Kit.
Based on the cloud, with information from anonymous patients, it can be used to build models that help diagnose Parkinson’s disease, control asthma, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.
This way of working totally changes the care management of patients, allows continuous feedback with patients through reminders, advice to promote the modification of the patient’s life habits, etc. Without a doubt, the smartwatch helps in this whole process.
Drug administration control and prevention of adverse events
Reporting drug-related adverse effects is usually a complicated task. Providers may sometimes be reluctant to provide information about errors, making it very difficult for regulators and researchers to track and identify harmful drugs.
The Internet of Things can help hospitals avoid or predict adverse events and drug-related safety issues by focusing on the integration of medical devices with the patient’s medical record. According to a recent study by West Health, the integration of medical devices can reduce errors by up to half.
This automatic integration eliminates the possibility of medical transcription errors, delays in recording new administration patterns, etc. This integration allows real-time access to patient information, allowing healthcare organizations to make better decisions in the care of patients from the point of view of wrong or inadequate medication administration.
Also, all this information can be used in the predictive analysis to alert medical teams of future problems in patients.
In an outpatient setting, health data generated by home surveillance devices or mobile phones are helping researchers develop strategies to increase vigilance in the use of medications, improving patient safety. Small effects can be reported remotely without patients having to go to care services, which implies better control.
Now that IoT has also reached health, the challenge is to ensure its proper functioning. The contributions of this trend are undeniable, but for the stimulus to last over time it is necessary to generate trust in the users.
The security of having control over their privacy, while allowing the specialist to have access to what is needed to diagnose more rigorously and accurately your patients, and that is generated by modernizing the IT infrastructure.
In this balance is the success of ” HealthCare of Things,” so that it can be a useful contribution protecting the health of people.