If you are like me, going to the Doctor’s is not a favorite task…I especially hate the waiting in the office knowing that I am surrounded by germs, contagions, and other icky stuff. So the idea of being able to see my doctor virtually is very appealing to me! Connected healthcare is not a new concept and Cisco has been leading the way in providing technology solutions that reduce the cost of quality care for chronically ill patients, increase the control on infectious diseases, produce a reduction in epidemics, decrease the rate of medical errors, and provide better customer service.
Before we proceed let’s define connected health, according to Wikipedia the definition is:
Connected Health is a term used to describe a model for healthcare delivery that uses technology to provide healthcare remotely. Connected health aims to maximize healthcare resources and provide increased, flexible opportunities for consumers to engage with clinicians and better self-manage their care. It uses technology – often leveraging readily available consumer technologies – to deliver patient care outside of the hospital or doctor’s office. Connected health encompasses programs in telehealth, remote care (such as home care) and disease and lifestyle management, often leverages existing technologies such as connected devices using existing cellular networks and is associated with efforts to improve chronic care.
This video provides a framework for Cisco’s vision of the future of healthcare.
With Cisco’s Community for Connected Health Summit and HIMSS taking place this week it is no surprise that new announcements are being published regarding the continued evolution of connected healthcare. Some of the announcements over the last couple of weeks include:
- St. Joseph and AT&T launch Telehealth program which will enable patients to connect with specialists in a real-time virtual visit.
- Tunstall Healthcare to provide telehealth to more than 6,000 patients in New South Wales, Australia. The primary goal is to prevent re-hospitalization. The program aims to help health professionals better manage chronic conditions, with telehealth as a key component.
- Palomar Pomerado Health System unveiled in-development software called MIAA (Medical Information, Anytime, Anywhere) and demonstrated how Cisco Cius will play a critical role in addressing care delivery challenges.
There are other exciting ideas being discussed regarding using virtual reality to treat phobias and robots to engage in health assessments at home.
KVIE Public Television’s, “Digital Doctors — The Future of Healthcare,” features coverage of Cisco’s work in advancing telehealth services in healthcare. This segment examines how new advancements in healthcare technology are enabling doctors and other clinicians to remotely interact and diagnose patients from miles away.
I for one am looking forward to no more icky waiting rooms, yeah to the doctor always being in!