October 25th, 2023
Category: Healthcare IT,Internet of Things,IoT
Posted by: teamta
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of interconnected devices and objects that share data over the Internet. This concept includes everyday objects like appliances, vehicles, and wearable devices, embedded with sensors, software, and connectivity for data sharing and interaction. The significance of IoT extends to many industries, revolutionizing operations, enhancing efficiency, and providing insights. IoT profoundly impacts healthcare, bringing in a new era of patient care and management. According to a report by Grand View Research, the worldwide IoT in the healthcare market was valued at USD 252.1 billion in 2022. It is projected to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.8% from 2023 to 2030, thanks to the use of remote patient monitoring, smart medical devices, and predictive maintenance. These advancements lead to better patient outcomes, fewer hospitalizations, and more efficient resource management.
IoT is revolutionizing healthcare by seamlessly connecting medical devices, patients, and healthcare providers, leading to enhanced patient outcomes, and streamlined processes. The top benefits of IoT in healthcare are listed below.
1. Remote Patient Monitoring:
Research and Markets report reveals that the Global RPM (Remote Patient Monitoring) systems market is projected to exceed $1.7 billion by 2027, indicating a significant and increasing demand for remote patient monitoring technologies. Through IoT, patients’ vital signs can be continuously monitored, reducing the need for frequent hospital visits and enabling early intervention.
For example, cardiac patients can use IoT-connected wearable devices such as heart rate monitors to send real-time data to healthcare providers. Doctors can remotely monitor patients’ conditions and quickly detect any irregularities, preventing potential complications.
2. Predictive Maintenance of Medical Equipment:
IoT sensors on medical equipment provide real-time data on equipment health, enabling predictive maintenance and reducing downtime. Hospitals utilize IoT to monitor the condition of MRI machines. The sensors analyze factors like temperature and vibration, predicting when maintenance is needed. This prevents unexpected breakdowns, enhances operational efficiency, and ensures patient care continuity.
3. Enhanced Medication Management
The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) reports that poor medication adherence contributes to 30-50% of treatment failures and 125,000 deaths annually in the U.S. Using IoT-enabled devices, patients can better manage their medication schedules, improving adherence and treatment outcomes. IoT-enabled smart pill dispensers, for instance, remind patients to take their medications at the right time. If a dose is missed, the device alerts caregivers or healthcare providers, ensuring timely intervention.
4. Smart Hospitals and Asset Tracking
The use of IoT devices offers the ability to gather, analyze, and report real-time information, eliminating the need to store raw data. All of this can occur via the cloud, with providers only receiving access to the final reports complete with graphs. Additionally, healthcare operations can benefit from the insights and analytics offered by this technology, allowing for quicker, more accurate decision-making, and reducing the likelihood of errors. Hospitals can also implement IoT-based asset tracking systems to monitor the location and condition of crucial equipment such as wheelchairs and infusion pumps. This not only helps to prevent equipment loss but also minimizes downtime and improves patient care.
5. Improved Patient Engagement
According to a survey conducted by the PwC Health Research Institute, 75% of consumers are open to sharing health data generated by their wearable devices with their doctors. By utilizing smartphone apps and wearable devices, patients can keep track of their daily steps, heart rate, and sleep patterns. This enables them to monitor their progress and become more involved in their health goals, leading to better collaboration with healthcare providers. Ultimately, the Internet of Things (IoT) provides patients with access to their health data, thereby encouraging engagement and proactive healthcare management.
IoT-enabled wearables and devices
IoT-enabled wearables and devices have revolutionized patient care through real-time data, proactive health management, and enhanced safety. This has ultimately led to improved patient outcomes and quality of life. Here are some notable examples:
- Smartwatches and Fitness Trackers
Wearable devices like smartwatches and fitness trackers have gained popularity for monitoring health metrics such as heart rate, steps taken, sleep patterns, and stress levels. Patients can easily track their activity levels, set fitness goals, and receive alerts for any irregularities such as high stress levels or abnormal heart rates. For instance, the Apple Watch offers ECG monitoring, fall detection, and activity tracking features, that are helpful in managing health proactively.
Hearables are advanced hearing aids that have revolutionized the way individuals with hearing loss engage with their surroundings. These devices are now designed to be compatible with Bluetooth technology, enabling synchronization with your smartphone. This feature allows you to filter, equalize, and add layered features to real-world sounds. A notable example of such technology is Doppler Labs.
- Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGMs)
Wearable devices known as CGMs offer real-time monitoring of glucose levels for people with diabetes. These devices eliminate the need for frequent fingerstick tests and allow patients to constantly monitor their glucose levels. This helps them better manage their insulin dosage and reduces the risk of experiencing high or low blood sugar episodes. One example of these devices is the Dexcom G6 CGM. It provides continuous glucose readings and sends alerts to the user’s smartphone whenever their glucose levels fall outside the expected range.
- Smart Inhalers
Individuals with asthma and COPD have the option to use smart inhalers. These inhalers are equipped with IoT technology, allowing them to connect with standard inhalers. Smart inhalers provide reminders and keep track of the usage of medication. Propeller Health offers sensors for smart inhalers that can be connected to regular inhalers and synced with a smartphone app to monitor medication usage and environmental triggers.
- Parkinson’s disease monitoring
To provide optimal treatment for Parkinson’s patients, healthcare professionals need to monitor how their symptoms change throughout the day. IoT devices can help by collecting continuous data on their symptoms, simplifying the process. With these devices, patients can go about their daily lives instead of being confined to a hospital for extended periods of observation.
Future of IoT in Healthcare
The future of healthcare looks promising with the development of advanced wearables and personalized treatment facilitated by the Internet of Things (IoT). With the help of sophisticated AI algorithms, intricate data patterns can be analyzed to provide precise diagnoses and targeted interventions. However, challenges such as ethical issues and interoperability among various IoT devices still need to be addressed. Keeping a balance between innovation and patient privacy remains crucial as IoT’s integration evolves, reshaping healthcare into a largely patient-centric environment.
The medical industry has great potential for transformation with the use of IoT technology. Patients can benefit from real-time data, accurate diagnosis with the help of AI analytics, and improved operational efficiency. Integration of IoT, AI, and healthcare promises personalized treatment plans, fewer hospital stays, and better patient outcomes.
We invite you to explore the possibilities of IoT with Travancore Analytics, the top provider of IoT development services. Let’s work together to create a healthier society by using advanced IoT technologies and solutions to unlock the future of healthcare.