Smart wearables were used in the world’s largest heart-health research project to screen 10 thousand people of suspected atrial fibrillation with a 94% accuracy. The study, conducted by Huawei technologies, shows the impact smart technology can have in the healthcare sector.
In the study, smart wearable devices collected heart signals from consenting subjects to detect abnormal heart rhythms. The devices would send the data to a cloud server where AI would notify medical management through a shared platform.
While this may seem like research that has not yet been widely implemented, smart technology in healthcare is already changing the way patients are treated with telehealth, remote care, and health monitoring technology connecting patients and doctors like never before.
If you’d like to learn how your healthcare organization can accelerate its digital transformation and build a roadmap to do it, download Impact's Fast-Tracking Your Digital Transformation eBook now.
Watch the video below to discover how technology can help providers and hospitals improve the quality of patient care:
What’s Smart Technology?
Smart technology refers to devices that make use of AI, the Internet, connectivity to the cloud, and more modern functionalities that they previously did not have.
For example, a smart fridge can connect to the Internet and collect user data where previous models could not. An example of a smart healthcare device is a smart bed that can track patient movements and is able to alert nurses when a patient leaves the bed.
Let’s explore five examples of the ways the healthcare sector uses smart tech to enhance the patient experience, improve proactive care procedures, and create a healthier world.
1. Remote Monitoring and Automated Healthcare Systems
Remote monitoring of patients’ healthcare is a growing trend that goes beyond traditional healthcare and into mainstream culture. Smartwatches and fitness trackers have become standard for many people, monitoring health factors like heart rate, blood oxygen, irregular heartbeat monitoring, and more.
In healthcare, providers are turning to devices to help patients by continuously monitoring their conditions and making proactive care choices based on data trends and predictions.
For example, connected inhalers are a smart technology in healthcare that saves lives by helping patients track usage and by reminding them when to take a dosage to maintain a healthy schedule.
66% of asthma deaths could have been prevented with smart technology monitoring like connected inhalers.
There are several wearable items or devices healthcare providers and patients can take advantage of to improve overall healthcare, including:
- Smart thermometers
- Connected inhalers
- Smart watches
- Fitness trackers (FitBits)
- ECG monitors
- Blood pressure monitors
Wearable biosensors are another technology used in hospitals. These allow providers across the world to monitor patients and administer proactive care. These sensors are worn on the body and monitor vital health signs like temperature and heart rate to give healthcare providers more information and insights on the progression of diseases, illnesses, and overall health.
These biosensors helped the world track the spread of COVID-19 by monitoring patients to detect symptoms and other signs of the virus. Medical staff could monitor patient data thanks to the devices and avoid unnecessary exposure.
2. Telehealth and Remote Care
Up to 78% of patients reported feeling satisfied about their experience with telehealth services. Additionally, 68% of physicians say they’d like to increase the use of telehealth in their practice.
Many of us are now familiar with telehealth, which became a popular choice for healthcare providers and patients during the pandemic. With the help of conferencing technology, providers could virtually treat patients over video call, provide prescriptions, and perform follow-up visits.
Part of this virtual care was the use of medical portal technology to build secure online healthcare portals to help providers and patients track treatment, store health records, and collect and access data from wearable devices or clinic visits.
While the use of telehealth and remote care became prevalent after the onset of the Covid pandemic, it is clear that both patients and practitioners have found benefits in the use of this technology and hospitals will continue to use it.
“Telemedicine significantly decreased odds of ICU mortality.” – Critical Care Medicine
3. Connected Emergency Response Solutions
Connectivity can greatly improve the efficiency and response times of emergency care, something that can be the difference between life and death. With modern healthcare smart technology, it’s possible to share data between ambulances, physicians, first responders, and accident and emergency departments in a reasonable amount of time that facilitates real-time responses.
This technology enables faster communication, video calls with doctors from inside ambulances, quicker patient histories, and easier hospital admittance with history and conditions already established.
On arrival, doctors can already have patient data on-hand—including vital signs, blood pressure, heart rate, temperature, etc.
4. Smart Hospital Management
Smart hospital management can help improve efficiency and effectiveness, improve patient experience, and help doctors by connecting digital systems to make it easier to access information like bed occupancy, device usage, equipment status, materials and supply counts, and other operational data.
Tracking this information and using it in decision-making can improve resource management, reduce waste, and help hospital staff avoid not having what’s needed due to bad tracking or incorrect data collection.
5. AI in Healthcare
Using AI within healthcare can help providers make more informed decisions and greatly improve patient care with proactive care predictions, quicker data analysis, and even more rapid diagnosis.
Using trained AI to recognize and diagnose certain diseases within test results can greatly increase the number of patients being processed and diagnosed (in some cases, 4x as quickly), reducing wait times significantly.
Smart technology in healthcare is changing the game in more ways than one. With more monitoring treatment options available to more people, physicians can use data, AI, and other innovative new tools to make a more proactive, data-driven approach to healthcare.
To explore in-depth the journey healthcare and other types of organizations take to digitize their environments and become future-ready, download Impact's Fast-Tracking Your Digital Transformation eBook now.