IoT Use Cases in Healthcare: Innovative Applications of the Internet of Medical Things

The internet-of-medical-things (IoMT) is revolutionizing modern healthcare as we know it. As solutions develop, we’re seeing exciting new cloud-based connected care solutions pop up that promise to provide better outcomes, better efficiency, and higher-quality patient experiences overall.

Below, we’ll review some fascinating IoT use cases in healthcare and why they’re so effective at improving healthcare management goals.

Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM)

One of the more straightforward use cases of IoT in healthcare involves using smart sensors to monitor patient conditions remotely.

Much like a standard fitness tracker, remote patient monitoring (RPM) solutions are being used to continuously track patient conditions remotely via the cloud. Medical professionals can use a wide array of sensors to monitor anything from heart conditions and eating behaviors to patient movements and even COVID-19 symptoms

All information is monitored and uploaded to the cloud 24/7 for instant access to data, which provides a host of benefits for both patients and healthcare providers alike:

  • Convenience - Both patients and healthcare providers can access the information at any time, making it simple to monitor patient conditions without time-consuming appointments.
  • Faster response - If there is a problem, the RPM sensors will catch it immediately and notify healthcare professionals for faster response times. The extra minutes saved could make the difference between life and death for some patients.
  • Accuracy - Constant monitoring provides healthcare providers access to long-term data to improve the accuracy of medical treatments.
  • Patient satisfaction - Since RPM solutions are remote, even patients who need constant monitoring can go about their day-to-day lives safely without needing to stay in the hospital for extended periods of time.

Although it sounds simple, these uses of Internet in healthcare have the potential to provide big efficiency boosts to a clinic. With always-on monitoring, healthcare providers can keep an eye on patient conditions to ensure they’re receiving the care they need — even when  they’re away from the clinic.

Chronic Disease Management

Chronic diseases take a lot of time, money, and labor to manage. In fact, around three-quarters of all healthcare dollars go toward treating chronic diseases. IoMT is helping to reduce those numbers by making it easier for healthcare professionals to manage chronic diseases with unmatched access to information and real-time monitoring.

Using RPM IoMT technology, healthcare providers no longer need to wait for in-person checkups to follow up on chronic conditions. They can access and monitor patients’ chronic illnesses 24/7 without relying on appointments or patient testimonials. 

In one study, the use of IoMT remote monitoring and in-depth analytics reduced the number of readmissions of high-risk congestive heart failure patients by over half.

Improve Medication Dosing and Patient Adherence

Patient adherence has always been an issue in the medical community. Once a patient leaves the facility, there’s no way to ensure they maintain the correct dosage or even take the medication at all. But with advances in IoMT technology, that’s quickly changing.

Medical professionals can now use embedded or wearable wireless sensors to monitor patient activities and track their health remotely.

Not only does this solution allow healthcare professionals to determine the effectiveness of the treatment, but they can also ensure that the patient is adhering to their treatment regimens. Doctors will be able to see if a patient fails to take their prescriptions, and some IoMT devices can even alert patients when it’s time to take medication.

These solutions offer a new type of healthcare data that may help providers better understand how medications work with each patient’s unique physiology – as well as tracking his/her adherence to the medication schedule in question.

Continuous Patient Data Collection by Wearables

To provide the best care, medical professionals need to have access to patients’ health information at all times. If something goes wrong, they need to know right away in order to mitigate the issue. However, it’s not practical or cost-effective to keep a patient in observation for too long. Eventually, they need to go home.

Luckily, tech companies are constantly developing wearable devices that can continuously monitor important health information:

  • Heart rate
  • Stress levels
  • Activity 

Recently, Apple and Samsung revealed they have been working on a smartwatch that can track blood sugar levels to help people monitor and manage diabetes - which is one of the most widespread and difficult chronic diseases to manage.

All this information is uploaded to the cloud where it can be viewed by both the patient and healthcare providers alike, making it easy to track and manage health conditions. 

Medical IoT Applications - the sky's the limit

As the above examples illustrate, the IoMT market is boundless in application. Solutions exist to improve productivity, protect patients, improve equipment efficiency, and more. And best of all, the medical IoT market is still young – meaning that the sky’s limit in terms of innovation.

If you’re curious about how our IoMT software solutions could benefit your enterprise, contact us today to learn more about our approach to IoT medical solutions.

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