Medical equipment used in the diagnosis and treatment of disease and other sicknesses has seen consistent growth in innovation and application, but the inefficiencies in managing and analysing the increasing volume, flow and complexity of health data in a timely, well informed manner, has stagnated innovation for healthcare operations and processes. This makes the healthcare industry one of the slowest industries to see any paradigm shift in operations and procedures. The Internet of Things (IoT) evolution of smart medical devices, either in the form of a connected and/or wearable medical device, has brought about a wave of opportunities that will transform the healthcare industry, for healthcare providers, practitioners and even device and equipment manufacturers. With IoT, they are now able to develop and provide new healthcare service models that extend right into the homes of their patients, drive new efficiencies in hospital operations and procedures, and reduced costs to maintain and support medical equipment, as well as increase equipment uptime. Furthermore, all of these opportunities are provided with the utmost security, ubiquity and efficiency, aptly complying with government and industry regulations.
Discover how IoT is transforming Healthcare into Smart Healthcare.
Connected Medical Devices
Medical devices used in the diagnosis and treatment of disease and health problems has seen little change in terms of data flow from the point of device use to the point of analysis and prognosis. At present, the output of such devices is manually recorded onto paper records and filed away for storage. Any diagnosis or prognosis would require possibly hours of filtering and analysing through paper records of a possibly long and complex medical history. It is vertical process that is plagued with inefficiencies, and with hospitals reaching the brink of their capacities, and patients often requiring prompt medical intervention, timely and informed insights into both the historical and current health condition of a patient is critical to effective and appropriate treatment.
Expert 365 is helping healthcare providers and equipment manufacturers transform their processes and existing devices into smart, connected devices with the capability to autonomously output and collate data into storage and analytical platforms in the cloud. With timely, efficient and accurate patient medical history and profiling, otherwise known as ‘accountable healthcare’, the result is increased efficiency in operations and procedures, a digitally cumulative and longitudinal medical history for each patient, and ultimately improved healthcare for patients.
Remote Patient Monitoring
Healthcare services were usually limited to in-person consultations and visitations to conventional clinical settings. During the consultation, the healthcare practitioner is presented with a problem described by the patient, but the challenge for the practitioner is that they lack historical health data about the patient, only referencing what they have since the last time they visited, if any even existed at all. This ‘black spot’ in the unknown health trend of the patient would be useful information that can aid the practitioner in identifying trends or anomalies that may signal to deeper, underlying health problems.
With smart, connected medical devices that can stream device data continuously or in ad-hoc to the cloud, practitioners can easily monitor outpatients and patients at home who require palliative care. Any time a patient uses a smart medical device at home, the output is recorded, securely stored into the cloud, where historical data is developed over time. Information of this nature is invaluable to healthcare practitioners for effective diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of patients.
With possibly thousands of equipment assigned to constantly different patients in different rooms, tracking the location and usage of each and every vital equipment used in the monitoring and treatment of patients can become a very challenging, laborious and time-consuming task.
Using RFID tagging and/or GPS technologies, hospitals and medical centres can continually keep track of the assignment, location and scheduling of vital medical equipment. Each and every medical equipment is catalogued in the cloud, their status and spatial referenced locations are tracked and visualized on a map representative of the facilities layout. The result is reduced costs and time spent finding out where a particular medical equipment is, facilitating its timely allocation to wherever it’s much needed by patients and staff.
Some medical equipment found in hospitals are extremely expensive and in some cases, only a few are in active use, catering to hundreds of patients in a single day. Their application in patient diagnosis is a critical component for healthcare practitioners to be accurately identify, analyse and assess the current condition of their patients well-being or state of illness, necessitating the requirement for their operational excellence and uptime to be a top priority. These complex machines generally involve a large number of moving electromechanical parts that are prone to failure. In any event of failure, the repair and procedures to move patients to other facilities with working machines is a costly response.
We are helping medical equipment manufacturers transform their medical equipment into smart, connected medical equipment. By decoupling and individually monitoring the failure-prone or sensitive components of these expensive machines, equipment manufacturers are able to Grow service margins by reducing the number of field-service deployments and increasing first-time-fix rates with remote access, diagnosis and repair, reduce the cost of care by leveraging predictive maintenance and driving new business models for hospitals and medical centres by enabling pay-per-usage pricing models. Healthcare providers benefit from having mission critical equipment that is assured with continual uptime, quality and maintenance.
It isn’t hard to find hospitals and medical centres with several floors, multiple hallways and hundreds of rooms, where all of them are constantly illuminated with bright lighting and HVAC at full blast, even if no one is around. Even during the evening or late nights, where staff activity, patients and visitors decline significantly, not much else changes with regards to lighting and HVAC settings.
With rising energy costs and an increasing demand for public infrastructure to reduce energy consumption, implementing an energy efficient lighting and HVAC solution is becoming an important component of that strategy. With our IoT and ‘Smart Facilities’ solutions, we are helping healthcare facilities reduce their energy consumption and minimize facility operating expenses.