Internet of Things (IoT) has created a new horizon in health care sector which specifically aims at connecting the world via smart objects. IoT enabled devices are used in various industries such as Environmental Monitoring, Building and Home Automation, Medical and Healthcare Systems, Infrastructure Management, Transport Systems, Energy Management, Industrial Applications, etc. Healthcare industry is one of the biggest industries that provides health care products and incorporates the delivery of services to patients. These services are supported by electronic processes called as E-health.
Using IoT devices remote health monitoring and notification can be done easily as well as quickly in case of emergency. Smart TV as a platform for E-Health Services can also be called as “Health-TV” which is one of the technologies that provide IoT based e-Health Solutions to the patients. ICT industry mainly focuses on the easy access of remote health services such as medication reminder, health monitoring and health coaching at home. It also helps in independent living style for the patient like the senior citizen, managing and accessing health services in a specific condition from home via Health TV. “Smart infusion pumps” is another technology which is used for treating patients more carefully and accurately. It collects data and then aggregates in a database which contains the records of the administration in the central server. They are basically network devices which connect hospitals and clinics through wireless local area network.”Smart-o-meter” is a Web-based patient-centered decision support system for BP control using an iterative, user-centered design process so that it meets standards of feasibility and acceptability for patient navigators and participants.
In short, the government should implement the health care technological solutions, as private organizations can’t reach maximum masses of India. A shift from traditional methods to the conventional methods of health care practices in India is required so as to build a better environment for the people to live in. As many Indians are still hesitant of relying on internet based technology, especially IoT , a proper awareness session and demo session should be conducted in leading hospitals and institutes.
There are 10 E’s in e-health which are described below:
- Efficiency – Improve the health care efficiency at low cost is the main motive behind the e-health which can be done by therapeutic interventions through enhanced communication possibilities between health care establishments and by involving patients.
- Enhanced health care quality – To increase efficiency, the quality must also to be improved by allowing comparisons among different providers, to direct patient streams to the best quality providers and consumers who are involved in quality assurance.
- Based on Evidence – Interventions in e-health must be evidence based so that their efficiency and effectiveness is proved by scientific evaluation.
- Empowerment of consumers and patients – E-health has opened the new doors for patient centered medicine, personal electronic records accessible to consumers.
- Encouragement of a new relationship between health professional and the patient where decisions are to be made in a shared manner.
- Education of both physicians & consumers through online sources. For physicians, it is by continuing medical education and by providing health education, tailored preventive information for consumers.
- Enabling the exchange of information as well as communication between health care establishments in a standardized way.
- Extending the health care scope beyond its conventional boundaries – It enables customers to obtain online health services from global providers easily.
- Ethics – In E-health, there is a new form of interaction between the patient-physician. This poses many new challenges and even threats to the various ethical issues such as informed consent, online professional practices, privacy and equity issues.
- Equity – E-health can be accessible in both urban and rural population.
E-health field aims at providing various services targeted to patients at increasing manner at low cost, better quality of services and efficiency, personalization and user-control. ICT industry focuses on the easy access of remote health services such as medication reminders, health monitoring, and health coaching at home, independent-living style for patients like senior citizens, managing and accessing health services in a specific condition from home. The well-known consumer electronic device ‘Health TV’ is user-friendly and can interface with different systems. The patient can anytime connect with their caregivers, submit measurements, take different surveys, get reminders about medication, tutorials of sample videos and video conference with caregivers. People those who are not familiar with the smartphone, computer, laptop or other portable devices, addresses the need, usability an, productivity. The main motive is to create a unique interface between technology and human beings. For example the use of a cloud-based remote service for the consultation of health reports, collect data from biomedical devices and present the data in graphical format to manage user reminder for medicines.
Smart infusion pumps are the latest technological device that has now been adopted by various doctors & medical practitioners for treating their patients more carefully and accurately. It is, basically a smart device which collects data and then aggregates into the database which contains the records of the administration in a central server. They are network devices which connect hospitals and clinics through wireless local area network. An Infusion device has a software which is programmed according to the various parameters of the patient such as their weights, dosages given to them and category such as either adults or pediatric. In addition to this, infusion device software uses different libraries for various patients records according to their sizes whether they are adults or kids and later on compare doses of drug to the library which has been selected according to the patient size. The smart infusion pump programmer is required to select the correct library in the first stage of set up so as to confirm the appropriate dose ranges are being used. In the drug library programming, the matching of a drug with appropriate infusion time is set within the infusion rate limits.
IOT based e-Health solutions is an upcoming trend which will revolutionize the healthcare industry in near future. In reference with the response from various respondent during our survey conducted it can be said that Internet of Things is emerging as a solution enabler in the health sector. Various technologies like Smart Infusion Pumps, Smart Monitoring, & Health TV will provide the edge over the existing methods used in the healthcare sector.
It can easily be concluded that people still prefer to use the old traditional methods. Some of them with high income prefer technology based solutions and readily up for new innovations. Most of them are not even aware of e-Health based solutions. In today’s world where technology has rooted deep into the life of humans, the Internet has become medium for survival without which life can’t be imagined also. E-Commerce is emerging trend but very few of them uses internet for purchasing health products. Some of them think internet related health information is reliable and want to use E-health monitoring method for their regular health check-up. This IOT based e-Health monitoring method will help in reducing the number of visit to the doctor & even doctor can monitor his or her patient from anywhere. As this is technically not so feasible now but in upcoming years this technology will definitely add dimensions to the existing trend. Also, the solution provided through IoT devices are more accurate and accountable.
DOI : 10.14257/ijbsbt.2015.7.2.02
-Prof. Yatin Jog