Tag Archives: healthcare

Patients to take more control of healthcare with 5G

Ericsson has published its latest ConsumerLab report, From Healthcare to Homecare. The report reveals consumer insights into the impact of 5G on the future of healthcare and its transformation across preventative, routine, and post-operative care.

Patients take more control of healthcare with 5G

Ericsson ConsumerLab has more than 20 years’ experience of studying people’s behaviors and values, including the way they act and think about ICT products and services. Ericsson ConsumerLab provides unique insights on market and consumer trends.

  • Among main Ericsson ConsumerLab report findings, patients believe online consultation will reduce the pain of waiting times
  • Consumers to take more control over monitoring health with wearables when 5G improves reliability and security
  • Industry players are counting on increased online access to centralized patient data to positively impact healthcare services

The report states that next-generation networks will be pivotal in healthcare transformation, providing transmission efficiency in an ecosystem of feedback and alerts, mobility and low latency. The networks will become a vehicle for a range of applications, including remote monitoring through medical-grade wearables, virtual doctor-patient interaction, and remotely operated robotic surgery.

Key findings include the decentralization of healthcare moving from hospitals towards homes. Also, that patient data is becoming more centralized, turning hospitals into data centers. Increasing dependence on wearables and remote treatments makes 5G essential to provide reliable and secure services. Evolving consumer expectations, anytime patient data access, and increased internet use are also making way for non-traditional players to disrupt the healthcare industry.

This report covers insights from an online survey of 4,500 advanced smartphone/mobile broadband users in Germany, Japan, South Korea, the UK and the US plus an online survey of 900 decision makers across six industries in these countries – healthcare, insurance, medical technology companies, telecom operators, app developers/aggregators and government regulatory bodies.

Read the full report: Healthcare to Homecare

Source: Ericsson

5 Ways 4G is Improving Healthcare

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Patients and Medical Professionals Benefit From Wireless Connectivity

Advancements in technology and connectivity are simultaneously improving the quality and efficiency of healthcare. One of the most powerful factors in the rapid evolution of healthcare IT has been the development of 4G LTE networking.

Reliable wireless connectivity enables thousands of new technologies and applications to help medical care providers “Cut-the-Wire” and provide care far beyond hospital walls. From kiosks and the Internet of Healthcare Things (IoHT) to Telehealth, mobile clinics, and electronic medical records—connectivity is revolutionizing the ways people tend to their health and well-being.

Kiosks

Waiting Room Kiosks: Reliable wireless connectivity gives providers the flexibility to place patient kiosks in waiting rooms to streamline simple data entry, as well as create a more personalized patient experience. At kiosks, patients can:

  • Set appointments and check in
  • Complete forms and questionnaires
  • Scan driver licenses and insurance cards
  • View account balances and pay for services
  • Review medical information
  • Learn more about specific medical conditions and how to care for them
  • Use interactive maps to navigate the building or campus

Specialized Kiosks: Some kiosks are used to increase awareness of and seek candidates for medical donations. Often set up in retail outlets, office complexes, and other high-traffic areas, these kiosks allow potential organ, blood, and bone marrow donors to answer screening questions and watch videos about the process.

Potential donors also can see profiles and photos of patients in need of donations, and they can sign up to receive a donor-testing kit in the mail.

Diagnostic Kiosks: Diagnostic kiosks have been around for decades. For example, blood pressure stations in pharmacies and grocery stores are used by an estimated 70 million people each year.

Today, the potential for diagnostic kiosks to improve patient care and operational efficiencies is rapidly growing. 4G LTE is helping usher in an era of kiosks with Machine-to-Machine (M2M) functionality to help providers do more than just remotely collect data from patients.

Today’s “clinic-in-a-store” kiosks can connect patients to physicians in real time. A patient may use a kiosk to conduct and transmit a retinal scan to an ophthalmologist, who can diagnose ocular disorders based on the findings.

Some kiosks serve as virtual offices where onsite healthcare professionals can conduct diagnostic appointments between remote physicians and patient. These kiosks also are capable of:

  • Updating patient health records on the spot
  • Gauging vital signs and informing patients whether they should seek further medical advice.
  • Administering diagnostic tests and then saving the results for patients to review and track online from their homes

The Internet of Healthcare Things (IoHT)

In the just the past few years, wireless technologies and medical devices within the Internet of Healthcare Things (IoHT) have transformed the way medical care is delivered. For instance, a new generation of intelligent heart rate monitors, blood pressure cuffs, glucometers, asthma inhalers, and thermometers no longer must be connected with wires.

These days, patients can send providers integral personal health information from the waiting room, at home, or even as they travel. For those with more severe medical conditions, healthcare professionals can remotely monitor patients’ vital signs via 4G LTE-connected, wearable body sensors.

Real-time data improves the ability of providers to quickly and accurately administer treatment based on up-to-date information. In other words, it helps achieve better health outcomes.

One of the most significant challenges physicians face is ensuring patients take medicine when and how it was prescribed. New wireless IoHT technology embedded in pill bottles enables doctors to remotely track whether a patient has taken his or her medicine.

Telehealth

The rise in healthcare costs has led to a reduction in the number of physicians and medical staff available to treat patients. Emerging trends in Telehealth seek to correct this imbalance through the use of wireless networks to connect providers with one another from remote locations.

Modern-day healthcare professionals can use video conferencing to bridge the gap between rural and urban offices. A family medicine physician in a small town can consult with specialists in a large city much easier than before. This practice literally can save the life of a rurally located patient who needs highly specialized care.

With systems now in place to remotely share electronic medical records, review scans or X-rays, and discuss treatment options in real time, doctors can save substantial time and money—which is important for everyone.

Mobile Healthcare

One of the most transformative improvements in healthcare technology has been in-vehicle connectivity. Emergency medical personnel now send triage information and patient histories ahead to the emergency room from the road.

While the patient is en route, ER staff can monitor vital signs, review photos or videos that might help diagnose the patient, check the person’s prescription drug history, and dictate treatment instructions to paramedics.

In-vehicle 4G LTE connectivity allows patients at mobile clinics to receive highly advanced healthcare services without setting foot in a traditional doctor’s office. Also, with mobile routers small enough to fit in a carry-on, in-home and mobile caretakers enjoy a secure, reliable Internet connection for accessing reference materials, email, and patient medical and prescription histories.

Electronic Health Records (EHRs)

The healthcare industry’s widespread move toward electronic health records has streamlined various processes and made access to a patient’s medical history practically instant— from anywhere.

Remote access to EHRs has been particularly useful in emergency care. As soon as first responders know a patient’s name, they can gain access to a wealth of information about medical status and begin to treat the patient accordingly.

Patients directly benefit from EHRs. They are are subjected to far fewer redundant questions from multiple practitioners during sign-in and follow-up processes. In turn, practitioners can spend a larger percentage of their time providing care.

Of course, security is a major factor regarding EHRs, as well as one of the main concerns for network administrators at healthcare facilities. Should a data breach result in patients’ personal, medical, or financial data being stolen, the resulting fallout could harm patients and subject the provider to fines for failure to comply with Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) or Payment Card Industry (PCI) guidelines.

Cradlepoint’s 4G LTE routing and cloud management solutions enable best-in-breed, cloud-based network security applications — that fully meet HIPAA and PCI regulations — to keep patients, hospital administrators and IT managers at ease.

“Our infrastructure is more secured now because of how Cradlepoint has enabled us to configure, monitor, and manage the network,” said Shawn Wiora, CIO and CISO forCreative Solutions in Healthcare. “We’ve made tremendous progress in achieving a much higher level of awareness of the network. If someone were to try to attack our facilities, we’d know it immediately and have solutions in place to thwart the attack.”

For additional protection, organizations use Cradlepoint solutions to enable Parallel Networking, which keeps credit card and other sensitive data completely separate or “air-gapped” from other applications and third-party networks.

Healthcare Technology Improves Patient Experience

The present and future of 4G LTE-enabled healthcare networking is bright. For instance, robotics is poised to emerge as a major tool for patient care—potentially affecting everything from the distribution of medication to exoskeletons enabling paraplegics to walk.

For now, practitioners and patients alike are reaping the benefits of 4G LTE connectivity making healthcare more accessible, efficient, and flexible than ever before.

Co-Star supply Cradlpoint wireless routers for 4G LTE Networking. Please click here for more information>

Source: Cradlepoint

Apple targets healthcare and connected homes with iOS 8

Apple used its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) to unveil its iOS 8 operating system with technology clearly aimed at making iOS devices central to healthcare and connected homes. Apple-logo

Speaking on stage in San Francisco, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that the company has now sold “well over” 800 million iOS devices, including 200 million iPads and more than 500 million iPhones.

In addition, over the past 12 months, 130 million new iOS customers were buying Apple devices for the first time. “Many of these customers were switchers from Android,” Cook noted, adding that nearly half of customers in China over the past six months switched from Android to iPhone.

Cook also touted the fact that the majority of iOS users are using the latest version of iOS, with 89 per cent of users running iOS 7 on their device. This compares to just 9 per cent of Android users running the latest KitKat version of the Google OS.

Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, introduced the HealthKit API which he said solves the issue of health information being siloed by providing “a single place that applications contribute to a composite profile of your activity and health”.

Along with the API, Apple’s Health app monitors health data, such as calories and sleep patterns, and can be integrated with third party apps such as the Nike+ fitness app.

The Health app is also able to communicate with hospitals if certain metrics, such as blood pressure, are outside the healthy parameters defined for individual users.

“We think this is going to be really important for healthcare,” Federighi noted.

iOS 8, which will be released alongside new hardware in the autumn, will also address the connected home. The HomeKit API allows users to control connected devices which often have their own app, such as thermostats, door locks and web cams, from their iOS device. This also includes integration of the Siri voice recognition technology.

“We thought we could bring some rationality to this space,” said Federighi.

The Messages app (the most-used on iOS devices) will also be updated with iOS 8 to include the ability to share location, opt-out of group conversation threads and send voice and video messages. In a similar way to Snapchat, video and voice messages will self-destruct after they have been accessed, unless users specify that they want to keep them.

Other additions, some of which bring iOS 8 up to speed with functionality seen on Android, include the Continuity function which allows users to switch devices when editing documents, enables iPhone messages to appear on an iPad, and sets up Wi-Fi hotspots without configuration.

iOS 8 also includes a refined notification centre and lock screen, within which users can interact with apps. Users will also be able to double tap the home button to see the contacts they most frequently communicate with.

The Spotlight search has been improved, while the QuickType functionality brings improved predictive text functionality.