Connected Healthcare

Doctors and healthcare professionals are evaluating the role of connected tools and their impact on patient engagement and experience.

Diagnostics|Oct.22, 2020

Connected healthcare is a healthcare management system in which all of the various aspects are linked. It's where health technology and mobile telecommunications converge, says Deloitte, and it empowers hospitals, clinics and other healthcare services to provide care remotely. It's an integral part of the future of healthcare, as it ensures that doctors, patients and family members have access to critical information.

To meet the healthcare challenges of the 21st century, healthcare providers must use 21st-century technologies and solutions. As the use of these technologies grows, connected care will become imperative — if not indispensable.

The Role of Connected Care

Technology continues to transform patient care and provide significant benefits for patients. As the role of tech in healthcare expands, doctors and healthcare professionals are evaluating the role of connected tools and their impact on patient engagement and experience.

When it comes to connected healthcare, there is already a conceptual model in place in which devices and services are designed around the patient's needs. Health-related data is stored and shared in such a way that a patient can efficiently receive personalized, proactive care. Any good healthcare management system will include telehealth, a provision of healthcare performed using telecommunications technology, especially when users are located in remote and rural areas.

As reported in the Medical Journal of Australia, doctors in the country's Northern Territory use video conferencing tools to provide reliable health services to the region's Aboriginal communities. In these remote areas, access to the internet has helped bridged the gap between patients and healthcare providers.

Remote monitoring, too, is key to providing excellent patient care. Demand for virtual devices is on the rise in healthcare. Wearable devices rule the roost; there are wearable devices that measure blood glucose spikes, heart rates and other vital health statistics and send this data to doctors. Care teams can respond to receive appropriate medical assistance in real time.

Better Care For a Changing World

Connected health solutions provider NextGen has observed that streamlining patient information helps increase practice productivity and make care more efficient. Where the cost of healthcare is rapidly increasing, there is a need to deliver critical care to a large number of people more effectively at lower costs. For example, for home and health hospices, patient data can help decrease duplicated services such as unnecessary testing. It also cuts down on costly hospital visits, medical fees and hospital stays.

More importantly, putting in place a robust connected healthcare management system goes a long way in producing better outcomes for patients. For example, if someone has received treatment from 10 different providers, they could be on 10 different medications. Leveraging patient data to aggregate medications from various sources not only saves time, writes the International Journal of Medical Informatics, but it produces accuracy when reconciling up to 10 medications.

Making sure that patients are connected to a tech-first healthcare system will be challenging, with telecommunications and broadband services being chief among those challenges. However, with a rapidly developing infrastructure, it's not long until we see connected care emerging as a dominant force in healthcare.


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