Welcome to our blog post on how IoT in healthcare is transforming traditional hospitals into smart hospitals.
Many businesses, individuals, organisations and even government institutions are driving towards reaping the many benefits of technology and a connected world.
According to Engineered Systems, “The growth and potential benefits within the connected world require buildings and places that can adapt and accommodate to ever-changing technology.”
This is also very important in the healthcare system as a lot needs to be automated, enhanced and made efficient. Both patients and healthcare experts need this revolution to enable enhanced experience in healthcare.
Let us take you on a learning journey on how IoT in smart healthcare offers efficiency and enhances processes.
Understanding the concept of IoT for Smart Hospitals
When we talk about IoT for smart hospitals, we are referring to the use of IoT devices and digitalised systems. The use of all these is to improve critical parts of operations in the hospital through fully automated processes.
What Is an IoT Smart Hospital?
Engineered Systems puts it that smart hospitals utilise IoT technologies and five other technologies. These are;
Artificial Intelligence (AI) — This involves the use of computers and other relevant machines for learning, thinking, decision making and performing actions. The overall aim of using this technology is reduce the workload.
Big Data Analytics — This is for gathering and analysing data for informed decision making. It is an innovation that optimises a lot of processes.
Augmented Reality (AR) and Digital Twins — Engineered Systems says that AR is an interactive experience that enhances and overlays a user’s physical world with computer-generated input.
In smart hospitals, AR is the component models that are embedded with data onto real-world sites. On the other hand, a digital twin is the next step in AR in which a digital replica of a building is created.
The Internet of Bodies (IOB) —For the remote monitoring of patients in hospital beds. This technology enables the recording of patients’ vitals and biometrics. This system is reliable because it is powered by authentication systems.
Cloud Platforms — You can talk about IoT smart hospitals when you have could platforms in combination of the aforementioned. Smart platforms are for aggregating and analysing a large amount of data that smart hospitals require.
In simpler terms, smart hospitals transform from traditional to using digitised tools and methods for operations. But that is not all. Smart hospitals adopt and implement the use of automation processes and robotics.
These smart tools are all useful for enhancing various aspects of hospital operations, patient care, and overall efficiency. They are important in setting up or transforming traditional hospitals into smart ones.
What Can You Achieve with IoT Smart Hospitals?
You can create a smart hospital by fully utilising the tools and benefits that IoT in healthcare offers. With the smart hospital, you can easily improve all the services of your hospital; including patient monitoring and management.
Another importance of smart hospitals is that connected devices offer real time data collection and data analysis on patient’s health. This enables healthcare professionals to make timely decisions and provide personalized care.
Furthermore, IoT technology enables seamless communication between different hospital departments and staff members.
Connected devices can facilitate the exchange of information, allowing for efficient coordination in tasks such as scheduling appointments, managing inventories, tracking patient records, and optimizing resource allocation.
In addition to enhancing patient care and operational efficiency, IoT for smart hospitals also contribute to improving safety measures. This works because of the IoT-enabled security systems and surveillance cameras.
With these in place, the potential risks or anomalies are promptly detected. The success of having security systems and surveillance cameras ensure secure environment for both patients and staff members.
So, from all we have discussed so far, implementing IoT in healthcare helps in creating functional and reliable smart hospitals.
The technology offers advanced connectivity, real-time data analysis capabilities, and streamlined processes. It also offers improved patient care outcomes, including increased operational efficiency.
IoT for Patient Monitoring in Smart Hospitals
IoT in healthcare introduces an era where we have smart monitoring systems that offer numerous benefits for everyone.
This is a technology that enables the connection of different medical devices and sensors to the internet. The goal is to enhance real-time data collection and accurate analysis for informed decisions.
In smart hospitals, the technology combines with smart devices and wearables to transform patients monitoring. IoT for smart hospitals enhances efficient continuous, remote monitoring capabilities.
In other words, it is an innovation that allows healthcare providers to easily and intelligently monitor patients’ vital signs. Jesses Anglen posits that it uses “Devices like smart watches, portable ECG/EKG sensors, and adhesive body patches” for tracking “heart rate, blood oxygen levels, respiratory rate, and skin temperature.”
Smart hospitals eliminate the need for constant physical presence. This leads to several advantages.
Advantages of IoT for patient monitoring
- It improves patient outcomes by enabling early detection and intervention
- Minimize and reduces healthcare cost by eliminating hospital readmissions and unnecessary visits.
- IoT for patient monitoring enhance the overall patient experience. It promotes independence and convenience.
IoT for Asset Tracking in Hospitals
IoT for asset tracking in hospitals utilizes smart sensors and connectivity for efficient monitoring and medical asset management. By leveraging IoT in healthcare, hospitals deploy tools for location tracking in real time.
This makes it easy for hospital staff to easily and quickly locate any equipment within the hospital environment. Thinking of a great inventory management with this technology? That will be great.
IoT for asses tracking in hospitals are also important patient tracking, guidance on the patient journey.
Important IoT tools for smart hospitals and asset management
IoT solutions for asset tracking in hospitals involve the deployment of sensors on medical devices and equipment. It also uses the Real-time locating systems (RTLS) for tracking asset and patient locations.
Stefan Schwab says that IoT in healthcare for smart hospitals and RTLS are inseparable. Opining that “a smart hospital experience would start at home, with the patient able to check in via an app, specifying room and even food preferences”
When the patients book their appointments and arrive at the hospital, they are guided by technologies. This goes from their parking space, to the entrance and to the waiting areas in the building.
Stefan further states that as the patients have been directed to the right waiting areas, IoT devices automatically notifies management.
Therefore, “not only does RTLS enable patients to smoothly navigate complex hospital facilities, but it reduces the time burden on hospital staff who are otherwise manually checking in and searching for patients or giving directions.”
With IoT smart technologies for hospitals, hospitals collect useful data like location, temperature, usage patterns, and maintenance requirements. The data is then transmitted wirelessly to a centralized system where it can be analyzed and acted upon.
Advantages of IoT for asset tracking in hospitals
- It allows healthcare providers to quickly locate critical assets at the right time
- The technology helps to save valuable time during emergencies or urgent procedures.
- It also helps in theft prevention or removal of equipment without permission.
- It helps in maintenance and replacements of equipment’s
- IoT in healthcare ensure that real time notifications are automatically sent to management when assets leave certain locations.
Overall, IoT smart hospitals plays important roles in asset tracking as it enables and enhances proactive measures. It is a powerful technology with tools that save time, resources and enhances patient experience.
IoT for Supply Chain Management in Hospitals
In supply chain management in hospitals, IoT also plays important roles. Especially when it comes to process optimisation. It is also a viable tool for improving efficiency, and enhancing patient care.
Hospitals use IoT supply chain management tools to monitor and manage their inventory in real time. Tools like sensors, RFID tags, and smart inventory systems are leading technologies in this area.
In smart hospitals, timely and secure deliveries of medicine and pharmaceutical supplies happen as a result of cutting-edge technologies. For example, product and packaging carry RFID tags and smart sensors for real time visibility. This creates room for accurate location tracking and condition of the packages in real time.
During this process, IoT tools generate a lot of data which is sent to the central network, powered by AI and analytic tools. There, they are quickly processed and can predict on how best to optimise inventories.
The tools can also offer information on demand, and ensure time restocking of out-of-stock products. Smart hospitals are also adopting and using blockchain technologies for secured transactions. This is very good and important for transparency and traceability of medications throughout the supply chain.
Additionally, there is the use of mobile apps with well-designed patient portals. Such applications enable easy access to critical information, especially on drug availability, reducing delays and ensuring a seamless flow of essential medical resources.
Advantages of IoT in healthcare through IoT for supply chain management
- IoT in supply chain management enhances visibility.
- The technology also enables predictive maintenance for critical medical equipment
- IoT-powered analytics is reliable for offering valuable insights into supply chain operations.
- Supply chain management IoT tools also enables temperature monitoring systems and play vital roles in their maintenance.
IoT for Infection Control in Hospitals
Infection control is one crucial role of IoT in the healthcare industry. In the traditional healthcare system, this is one hell of a task; it endangers people, it takes a lot of resources, time and so much efforts.
However, with IoT in healthcare applications, the monitoring and management of hospital environments follows processes of automation. Very easily, infections and diseases are prevented from spreading in the hospital environments.
It is very possible because hospitals can easily keep track of relevant data. Especially on temperature, temperature, humidity, and air quality. IoT in healthcare also allows the monitoring and tracking of hand hygiene compliance, equipment sterilisation and patient movements.
IoT for Infection Control in Smart Hospitals
Healthcare professionals in smart hospitals achieve infection control using a combination of some or all of these IoT in healthcare tools;
- Wireless smart sensors
- RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification)
- Wearable devices
- Hand hygiene monitoring systems
- UV-C Disinfection Robots
- Real-time Location Systems (RTLS)
- Environmental monitoring systems
- Predictive analytics
- Smart ventilation systems
- Patient monitoring devices
- Data analytics platforms
- Blockchain technology
- Mobile apps
- Remote monitoring
- Communication systems
- Electronic Health Records (EHR) Integration
Advantages of IoT for Infection Control in Smart Hospitals
- implementation of smart hand hygiene systems for automatic and efficient monitoring of handwashing practices among healthcare workers.
- Smart hospital utilises IoT-enabled environmental monitoring systems to maintain optimal conditions for preventing infections.
- IoT devices in smart hospitals are useful for facilitating contact tracing within healthcare settings.
IoT for Clinical Decision Support
IoT technology enables the collection and analysis of real-time data from various medical devices and sensors, providing valuable insights for clinical decision support.
By integrating IoT devices into healthcare systems, medical professionals can monitor patients remotely, track vital signs, and receive alerts in case of any abnormalities. This real-time data allows for early detection of potential health issues and enables timely intervention.
IoT also plays a significant role in improving patient outcomes by enhancing the accuracy and efficiency of clinical decision-making. With access to comprehensive patient data collected through IoT devices, healthcare providers can make more informed decisions regarding diagnosis, treatment plans, and medication management.
Furthermore, IoT-enabled clinical decision support systems have the potential to reduce medical errors and improve patient safety. By leveraging real-time data analytics and machine learning algorithms, these systems can identify patterns or trends that may go unnoticed by human clinicians, thus enabling proactive interventions to prevent adverse events.
Overall, the integration of IoT in healthcare offers immense potential for enhancing clinical decision support. By harnessing the power of real-time data collection and analysis through IoT devices, healthcare professionals can make more accurate diagnoses, develop personalized treatment plans, and ultimately improve patient outcomes.
IoT for Patient Engagement
Research shows that the application of IoT in healthcare opens up new opportunities and possibilities for improving patient care. The technology also plays the leading role in the enhancement of patient engagement.
IoT in healthcare is reliable in patient engagement because it enables real time monitoring and tracking of patients’ health conditions. The technology leverages different connected devices to collect important data.
These devices may include, wearable sensors, smartwatches, and other smart medical devices. They collect data on the patient activity levels, medication adherence, heart beats, etc.
All data are transmitted to the relevant healthcare providers/caregivers for proper monitoring and quick actions.
IoT Smart Hospitals for Patient Engagement
In IoT smart hospitals, patient engagement begins from home or point of contacting the hospital for any engagements.
Accessibility and communication are seamless via mobile apps or websites which are installable or accessible from the patient’s phones/computers.
Such technologies offer convenience by allowing the patient to speak with an expert or book an appointment. The mobile app may also offer readable maps to patient to easily navigate their way to the hospital.
At the hospital, the Real-time Location Systems (RTLS) or other wayfinding and navigation technologies offer guidance to the patient. This may begin from the parking lot to the waiting area.
The technology may also notify hospital management of patient arrivals with detail of the patient and their location within the hospital environment.
IoT smart hospitals use the following technologies for patient engagement;
- Telehealth and virtual consultation platforms
- IoT-enabled smart beds
- Mobile applications
- Wayfinding and navigation apps with IoT beacons
- Patient education content delivery through IoT
- IoT-based patient feedback and survey systems
- Asset tracking solutions for medical equipment
- Fall detection and safety sensors
- Queue management systems with real-time information
- IoT-integrated patient entertainment services
- Nutritional monitoring systems for smart cafeterias
- IoT-based security and access control solutions
Advantages of IoT Smart Hospitals for Patient Management
- Empower individuals to take control of their own health through mobile apps for easy access to medical consultants.
- IoT enables patient care by offering platforms for seamless communication between patients and healthcare providers
- IoT in healthcare paves the way for the adoption of tech driven solutions. These may include telemedicine and remote monitoring programs.
IoT for Clinical Research
Lastly, is on how IoT smart hospitals provide reliable data for quality clinical research. Application of IoT in healthcare is excellent for making real time data available for relevant needs in research.
The role of IoT in healthcare for clinical research is profound because the technology provides data from diverse patient conditions. Data may range from mild to severe conditions, patient behaviours, patient needs for medical assistance under different conditions, temperatures, humidity, etc.
All the IoT smart IoT tools mentions in this blog post so far are useful in offering relevant data and aiding clinical research.
Advantages of IoT for clinical research
- IoT smart hospitals enables and enhances remote data gathering and on a continuous process.
- The technology in the healthcare sector also allows researchers to access vast amount of data from different and diverse sources.
- IoT in smart hospitals makes real time monitoring and alerts in healthcare environment or setting very possible.
IoT in Smart Healthcare: Here is our Conclusion
In conclusion, having discusses critical aspects of IoT in healthcare, we are certain that the technology promises a brighter future. It is an amazing innovation from everything that it enables, and the possible it opens for patients and care givers. It is worth the investment.
The technology will continue to grow and expand, and its potentials of improving patient care outcomes will remain immense.
How can IoT improve patient care?
IoT can improve patient care in several ways. But it mostly does so by enabling real-time monitoring of vital signs, tracking medication adherence, and automating data collection.
This leads to very timely interventions and personalized patient care. It also leads to enhanced patient care experience.
What are the benefits of IoT in smart healthcare?
The benefits of IoT in smart healthcare may include
- Remote patient monitoring,
- Early disease detection,
- Optimized workflows,
- Reduced hospital-acquired infections,
- Enhanced patient engagement
All benefits are powered by IoT in smart healthcare data-driven insights.
How is IoT used in hospitals?
IoT in smart healthcare is used in hospitals in several ways;
- It is used for efficient asset tracking,
- patient monitoring,
- environmental sensing,
- infection control,
- data analytics.
All of the above uses aim at improving patient outcomes and operational efficiency.
What is a smart hospital in IoT?
An IoT smart hospital is facility building with digitised tools and equipment. The facility also uses interconnected devices and robotic systems that enable real-time data collection, analysis, and automation.
A smart IoT healthcare hospital is one which uses smart technologies for medical care to enhance patient care, safety, and hospital operations.