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Connected Devices Come To Life In Health Care
The healthcare industry is one industry that shows clear promise as the Internet of Things (IoT) provides new capabilities including enabling consumer convenience, greater access, and better data.
Consumers are now used to doing things like booking their own travel, doing taxes, and using the Internet to gather information. Now they want to have more control over their own healthcare.
Smart medical devices that patients can operate themselves show great promise. With companies like Orthocare Innovations LLC , an Oklahoma City start-up, an amputee can adjust the heel height of their prosthesis—an artificial foot and ankle device on his right leg—simply by pressing a button on his smartphone.
Then there’s the area of patient safety in the hospital setting. According to John Sharp, an expert in Health IT and Clinical Research Informatics:
One big advance is smart IV pumps and their impact on patient safety. Not only can doses be preset, but the pumps can communicate with electronic medication administration records (eMAR) and bar code technology making them intelligent infusion devices. The use of robotics in hospitals continues to grow. Robotic-assisted surgery is becoming widespread if not controversial .
Other uses of robots include, “packaging drugs or delivering lab results, and telemedicine-based technologies that connect clinicians and patients in ways that previously didn’t exist”. Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) is being used to track assets, such as, IV pumps, which can be difficult to find in a busy hospital or even hoarded. Others are using RFID to track medications administered to patients.
Watch for a concerted push toward getting Medicare and health insurers to pay for these Internet of Things advances. Chances are, they not only improve outcomes, but they are money-savers as well.