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The Impact of IoT in Healthcare

This blog post is a noteworthy contribution to the QuriousWriter Blog Contest.

Generally, the Internet of Things (IoT) in healthcare revolves around sensors and other smart devices. But if you go deeper, you will see there’s more to it. According to a recent study, spending on IoT solutions in healthcare will reach by up to a massive $1 trillion by the year 2025. 

IoT holds a strong promise for different healthcare organizations and offers personalized and accessible services to doctors and patients. From remote health monitoring to the transmission of real-time alerts, there are different areas where IoT is extensively leveraged. Moreover, it has also proved to be cost effective. Let’s take a closer look at different IoT use cases and understand how it can impact the industry.

Top Six Use Cases of IoT in Healthcare 

1. Remote Patient Care 

A lot of people do not have easy access to hospitals. In case of an emergency, it takes a long time to reach different healthcare facilities. Even for healthcare service providers, it is not feasible to visit every patient regularly and check on their conditions. 

Such issues can now be solved with the help of remote patient care that is powered by IoT. It enables healthcare professionals to assist patients with medications, prescriptions, and the use of different biometric sensors. It also allows patients to connect different wearables or other portable devices and update their data in real-time. 

In addition, some IoT devices facilitate face-to-face talk over the internet. This helps the healthcare professionals to obtain crucial information needed for preparing different plans. The collected data can be used to perform analysis, create better visualizations and glean insights This live video and audio streaming allows efficient monitoring of a patient’s condition and reduces the need for a commute.

2. Tracking of Patients and Inventory Staff

Increasing workforce efficiency and reducing operational costs are the main challenges for the healthcare organizations. And this is true for both small and large scale hospitals which run staff members, patients, and inventory. 

With the use of IoT devices in the form of Wireless ID cards, hospitals can manage different admissions, increase security, and measure the overall performance of their staff. They can facilitate asset tracking  with IoT and Real-Time Location Systems.

3. Augmenting Surgeries 

IoT has started penetrating into operation rooms as well. There are various connecting robot devices that are driven by artificial intelligence and are performing surgeries, increasing the precision brought by robot-assisted surgeons. 

The devices, along with IoT, can streamline the activities of the medical staff. They can be used to collect data, transmit and analyze it, thereby helping the medical staff to record the smallest of details and prevent surgical complications. 

4. Pharmacy Management 

The pharmacy business is worth millions of dollars and is continuously expanding. However, there are numerous bottlenecks in managing and transferring the drugs from storage facilities to preserving them. 

IoT can combine safety approaches along with the latest technology and address these issues. For instance, smart fridges can help you store vaccines and maintain optimum temperature when needed. IoT-enabled pharmacies can increase operational efficiencies, ensure security, and enhance patient satisfaction.

5. Emergency Care 

In Emergency Care, the outputs are based upon accuracy, time, and the availability of information. At times, the actions even depend upon the quality of data received during the emergency call and information collected while each of the patients is taken for immediate health care. 

With the inclusion of IoT in emergency care, medical professionals can collect data accurately. This data can be accessed by the emergency care staff like the paramedics for better assistance. This data can further be used for transmitting it to ER staff in real-time that can help in assistance.

6. Monitoring of Critical Hardware 

Almost every modern date healthcare facilities require some sort of software for functioning. Also, when these are not handled properly, hardware results in different risks and threats. Power outages, system failures, or cyber-attacks further add to the challenges. 

In such scenarios, IoT-oriented solutions can virtually monitor the critical medical hardware. In case any anomaly is detected, medical staff can be alerted, preventing future hardware failure. 

IoT is increasingly becoming relevant in the healthcare sector. IoT explores new dimensions of patient care and is proving to be the differentiator in the increasingly connected world. Healthcare organizations must prepare themselves to harness this digital power and take a step towards improving patient’s health and experiences while improving their operations.

Learn more about Quantiphi’s healthcare solutions.

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Written byJunaid Mulla

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