The Internet of Everything Hearts Your Health
An embeddable tooth implant sends patient information to a dentist in real-time.
A smartwatch responds to touch to help ease the loneliness of long distance relationships.
A bracelet records daily physical activity and caloric intake and provides recommendations to achieve health goals.
These capabilities may have seemed like a dream only a decade ago but now are a reality, thanks to the Internet of Everything (IoE)
Aside from the obvious coolness factor of the growing list of connected things, many of these wearable and mobile-enabled devices are helping save lives. In honor of Valentine’s Day and American Hearth Month, it’s a good time to ask: How is the Internet of Everything “hearting” our health?
The Power of Four Enables Life-Saving Intelligence
At Cisco, we refer to the Internet of Everything as the increased connections among four key components: people, things, data and process. The true power of IoE is best seen when all four of these components work together to change how we enable intelligent processes.
This is especially true for the healthcare industry. It’s not enough for your smartwatch to be able to connect to the Internet or for your connected shirt to record your movement behavior. It’s what we do with that information that makes the connection so valuable.
In a recent CNBC article, Frans Van Houten, CEO at Royal Philips Electronics, discussed the rise of the hospital to home healthcare movement. The idea is our increasingly mobile world is enabling real-time vital signs, family history and diagnostic information to be shared with your doctor, allowing for faster and earlier detection with a more personalized treatment plan. For good reason, there is much development and investment in this emerging area of healthcare.
Here’s a closer look at how more networked connections are able to collect high-velocity data and turn it into knowledge that can be delivered to patients and professionals to prevent disease, eliminate wasted efforts and better manage health crises. In other words, here’s the IoE in action:
- Improve caregiver efficiency at the hospital: Patient wait times and errors can be reduced when caregivers leverage the power of the Internet of Everything to coordinate resources, track completion of tasks and enable better communication between doctors, staff and patients. For example, using a combination of Wi-Fi and GPS-based location services, coordinators can keep track of where caregivers, medical equipment and other equipment such as wheelchairs are located, allowing for faster mobilization and managed workloads.
- Monitor patients at home: Imagine that a surgical patient is outfitted with a wearable monitoring devices he can wear at home, allowing for a more peaceful recovery while doctors watch for any irregularities.
- Share data with emergency personnel: It’s possible that in the future wireless mesh, 4G or other such networked connections between an ambulance, a cloud, a hospital and various data centers, could enable sharing a common view of vital patient information, increasing the likelihood of a positive outcome.
This is just the beginning of how the Internet of Everything can help us live longer lives with those we love. As the wearable technology continues to promote more patient involvement and evolves in analytic capability, what it means to receive a diagnosis or take proactive approaches to our health will fundamentally shift.
It’s clear that when we talk about the value of networked connections, there is nothing more valuable than a long and happy life. Tell us what you think – join the conversation with #IoE.
Attending HIMSS14? Don’t miss the 7th Annual Cisco Connected Health Summit focused on health innovation and best practices. Simply call HIMSS at 800-465-1272 and ask for the Cisco event (code CCCINV) to be added to your registration.