The Need of Internet of Things (IoT) in Healthcare

October 3, 2018 | Published by

The ultimate decision-making authority lies with the individual; thus, the technology never replaces humans. Humans can opt for those technological solutions that simplify their work and bring about efficiency.

The three words that define everything the IoT stands for – Convenience, Efficiency, Automation. IoT is a technology that has been generating a buzz in almost every industry, along with the healthcare industry. IoT’s beginnings in healthcare can be traced to the use of smart sensors, remote monitoring, glucose monitors, wearable biometric sensors, and smart beds.

Why Healthcare Needs IoT?

  • Turning Data into Actions: Quantified health will be the future of healthcare as the heath that is measurable can be better improved. Thus, it is better to take the advantage of quantified health technology. We are aware that the data affects the performance, and so we need IoT for better outcomes with respect to objective measurement and tracking of health.
  • Improving Patient Health: IoT ensures that every information is taken into consideration to make better decisions for patients, it is made possible by updating the personal health information of patients on the cloud and removing the need to feed it into the EMRs. Moreover, it can be used as a home monitoring tool and medical adherence.
  • Promoting Preventive Care: In this industry, the primary area of focus is prevention because health care expenses are projected to rise unmanageable in the future. The widespread access to high fidelity and real-time data on every individual’s health will transform healthcare by helping people live healthier lives.
  • Enhancing Patient Engagement & Satisfaction: Optimizing surgical workflow can lead to increased patient satisfaction, and this is made possible through IoT. Suppose, a family is informed about the patient’s discharge from surgery. This increases patient engagement by allowing patients to interact with their physicians and because the internet-connected devices are delivering valuable data, so the need for direct patient-physician interaction is minimized.
  • Advancing Care Management: IoT allows care teams to connect and collect various data points on personal fitness like heart-rate, temperature, sleep, and activity. Moreover, sensor-fed information can send alerts to patients in real-time so that they get event-triggered messaging like triggers and alerts for heart-rate. This leads to the improvement in workflow optimization and ensures that all the care management is done from the home.

Challenges to adopting IoT in healthcare

The challenges to acquiring IoT in healthcare are more obvious storing, securing and managing data. There are reliability and security issues with data along with the lack of infrastructure and training among providers because there are the providers who lack the infrastructure even when the data does flow freely.

Another problem is the poor internet access among the populations including the elderly, with low education levels, low-income populations, and minorities.

The Road Ahead

IoT is being popular in various industries such as industrial, automobile, civil planning, and retail. In healthcare, IoT will resolve the myriad problems by helping in optimizing the way the things are done. With this technology, providers will see improved adherence to care plans, fewer missed appointments and improved outcomes such as lowered inpatient admissions. IoT will align the shared goals of reduced costs, better health and improved experience of stakeholders in healthcare, once fully adopted.