India has less than 5 doctors per 10,000 people. India has the second largest number of phones in the world. There is a clear link here that will help us bridge the gap. The answer is IoT.
Internet of Things (IoT) is an ecosystem of connected physical objects that are accessible through the internet. The ‘thing’ in IoT could be a person with a heart monitor or an automobile with built-in-sensors, i.e. objects that have been assigned an IP address and have the ability to collect and transfer data over a network without manual assistance or intervention.
IoT is going to be a game changer and will ensure optimum high quality, low cost healthcare for everyone.
IoT will shape health care in the following ways
1. Prevention is better than cure
A plethora of smart fitness bands have flooded the market which record your daily physical activity, heart rate, ECG and other vitals. The analysis of this data, with ever improving AI, will paint early signs of impending ailments and thus help in taking necessary action to ensure that the patient does not suffer disastrously later.
2. Ensuring doctors everywhere
India is a country of 7 lakh villages and the density of specialists and super specialists is concentrated around its urban areas. IoT has the capability to provide healthcare to India’s rural population at the fraction of the cost early on during the disease cycle at a much lower cost using remote sensing equipment.
3. Patient monitoring
Due to low healthcare professionals to patient ratio, it becomes quite difficult to monitor patients at all times. IoT monitoring devices come in handy in the aid of patients and the data from these devices can alarm the doctors and hospitals if the patient needs urgent attention.
4. Reduced medical costs and errors
IoT uses diagnostic devices and software applications through interconnected devices. This will help collect accurate health data to assist medical professionals to make informed decisions leading to minimum errors. This will also reduce the number of visits to the hospital and hospital admissions, which in turn will reduce the cost of healthcare.
5. Improved quality healthcare
This constant monitoring through IoT devices will provide data leading to evidence based treatments and customised procedures as per the need of that particular patient. This will lead to better treatment and shorten the treatment cycle.
IoT, with its patient-centric approach, is the need of the hour. It has the capability to revolutionise India’s shoddy healthcare system and provide an optimum solution to the needs of the people who are struggling to receive even basic healthcare.
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The CSR Journal Team