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The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of physical objects equipped with sensors, software, and other technologies that communicate with other devices via the internet or other communication networks. Its application spans across various industries, including healthcare, transportation, manufacturing, and agriculture.
Recent data shows that the global IoT market size is projected to reach $1.5 trillion by 2027, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.6%. In addition, the number of IoT devices is expected to increase from 8.74 billion in 2020 to 30.9 billion in 2025, a CAGR of 28.7%.
The healthcare industry is one of the fastest-growing adopters of IoT, with a predicted CAGR of 26.2% from 2021 to 2028. By 2025, the healthcare IoT market is estimated to be worth $188.2 billion. IoT devices can help healthcare providers monitor patients remotely, track medical equipment, and even detect outbreaks of infectious diseases.
The manufacturing industry is also seeing significant growth in the adoption of IoT technology, with an estimated CAGR of 23.6% from 2021 to 2028. The use of IoT in manufacturing can lead to increased efficiency, reduced downtime, and improved supply chain management. By 2025, the global IoT in manufacturing market is projected to be worth $310.5 billion.
A substantial set of IoT-led devices can be broadly categorised into –
In the consumer market, IoT technology is synonymous with the concept of a ‘smart home’ including devices, home automation, and home appliances with remote monitoring capabilities that can be controlled using smartphones and smart speakers.
In the healthcare industry, IoT technology is increasingly being used to develop healthcare applications, which is referred to as “smart healthcare”. According to a 2015 report by Goldman Sachs, the use of IoT devices in healthcare has the potential to save up to $300 billion in annual healthcare expenditures by increasing revenue and decreasing costs.
The development of healthcare IoT applications enables hospitals to provide remote health monitoring, data collection and analysis, access to digitized medical resources, emergency notification systems, and healthcare services. IoT can also play a crucial role in managing chronic diseases, prevention, and control. The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) and connectivity allow healthcare professionals to capture patients’ data and apply complex algorithms in health data analysis with just a click.
As the demand for healthcare IoT applications grows, the healthcare industry is increasingly focusing on developing and deploying them. With the development of healthcare IoT applications, healthcare providers can increase efficiency, reduce costs, and improve the overall quality of care. In addition, IoT devices can help providers monitor patients remotely and detect outbreaks of infectious diseases in real-time.
Overall, the development of healthcare IoT applications is a rapidly growing field that has the potential to revolutionize the healthcare industry. As the benefits of these applications become more widely recognized, we can expect to see increased investment and development in this area.
It’s been more than 2 years since the COVID-19 pandemic took place. Till today globally hospitals are
facing tremendous challenges in delivering quality healthcare services.
key challenges faced by the healthcare industry currently:
Staffing shortages and burnout: Hospitals and healthcare facilities are facing a shortage of skilled healthcare professionals, which is putting a strain on the industry as a whole. This is particularly true in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has put healthcare workers under even more stress.
Rising healthcare costs: Healthcare costs continue to rise, putting a strain on patients, providers, and payers alike. This is particularly true in the United States, where healthcare costs are among the highest in the world.
Aging population: The population is aging, and many older adults are dealing with multiple chronic conditions that require ongoing care. This is putting a strain on healthcare resources and making it more difficult to provide high quality care.
Data management: The healthcare industry is generating more data than ever before, but there are challenges in managing, storing, and analyzing this data. This is particularly true when it comes to sensitive patient data, which must be kept secure and private at all times.
Regulatory compliance: The healthcare industry is subject to a range of strict regulations and compliance requirements, which can be challenging for providers and app developers to navigate. This is particularly true when it comes to healthcare IoT applications, which must meet strict regulatory requirements to ensure patient safety and privacy.
Technology integration: Healthcare providers must be able to integrate new technologies into their existing systems and workflows in order to see the full benefits of IoT and other digital innovations. This can be a complex and time-consuming process, particularly for smaller providers with limited resources.
Developing healthcare applications using IoT technologies, such as eHealth, mobile health, ambient assisted living, wearable devices and smartphones, semantic devices, community-based healthcare systems, and other innovative solutions, has the potential to improve healthcare efficiency, population health, and alleviate the challenges faced by the global healthcare system. The need for IoT technologies in the healthcare sector has given rise to the development of healthcare IoT applications, which can improve the efficiency and coordination of primary, secondary, and tertiary healthcare services.
The growth and demand for healthcare IoT applications in the healthcare industry is driven by the need for equitable access to medical services and evidence-based medical solutions. These applications provide easy access to trusted clinical technology and help improve decision-making, resulting in better outcomes across the healthcare continuum. As the need for healthcare IoT applications increases, app development in the healthcare sector is becoming increasingly important to ensure that the technology meets the specific needs of patients and healthcare providers.
The integration of IoT technology in healthcare has paved the way for the development of different types of healthcare architectures. These architectures are designed to improve the delivery of healthcare services, enhance patient outcomes, and facilitate the collection, storage, and analysis of medical data. Here are some of the common types of IoT-based healthcare architecture:
1. Cloud-Based Architecture: This architecture allows for the storage and processing of large amounts of healthcare data on the cloud. Cloud-based architectures are popular for their scalability, cost-effectiveness, and ease of access.
2. Edge-Based Architecture: In this type of architecture, the data is processed and analyzed at the edge of the network, i.e., closer to the source. Edge-based architectures are ideal for applications that require real-time responses, such as remote patient monitoring and emergency response systems.
3. Fog-Based Architecture: The fog-based architecture is a hybrid of cloud based and edge-based architecture. This type of architecture allows for the processing and storage of healthcare data at the edge of the network, as well as in the cloud.
4. Wearable-Based Architecture: Wearable-based architecture involves the use of wearable devices to collect and transmit healthcare data. Wearables are ideal for remote patient monitoring, as they allow patients to track their health indicators and provide real-time feedback to healthcare providers.
5. Gateway-Based Architecture: In gateway-based architecture, the gateway acts as a bridge between the devices and the cloud. This architecture allows for the secure transmission of healthcare data from devices to the cloud, while ensuring the privacy and security of patient data.
IoT-based healthcare architectures have the potential to transform the healthcare industry by improving the delivery of healthcare services, enhancing patient outcomes, and reducing healthcare costs. The type of architecture used depends on the specific requirements of the healthcare organization and the nature of the healthcare application. It is important for healthcare providers to carefully evaluate the different types of architectures and choose the one that best meets their needs.
The successful implementation of IoT-related projects in the healthcare industry requires certain management techniques. These include:
1. A dedicated research and development phase: It is important to thoroughly research and plan the project before initiating it. This helps in identifying potential challenges and addressing them proactively.
2. Established proof of concept or prototype: Before starting the actual project, it is important to create a prototype or proof of concept to ensure that the technology is functional and effective.
3. Dedicated project managers with interdisciplinary technical knowledge: Project managers with technical expertise and knowledge in multiple domains can help ensure effective implementation and avoid potential roadblocks.
4. Correct and universally approved use of business and technical jargon: The use of standardized language and terminology helps ensure clear communication and better understanding between stakeholders.
Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) offers numerous benefits, including streamlined healthcare delivery, proactive health monitoring, and remote patient monitoring. It is important for healthcare organizations to understand and embrace these emerging IoT technologies to support the global healthcare system and deliver safe and effective care to everyone.