A couple of centuries back, patients were usually treated in their own households, often by the person who did have a little knowledge or experience such as elders, midwives, or neighbors.
Remote healthcare or remote patient monitoring (RPM) probably initiated in the 1800s when two medical experts conferred over the telephone. Then, in the late 1940s, remote healthcare technology progressed when one medical practitioner transferred X-ray images via telephone wires to another medical practitioner in Pennsylvania.
Further, in the late 1960s, medical practitioners, all over the world, began relaying EKGs by means of telephone wires, and furthermore, by the 1970s, a remote monitoring system was developed to keep one’s eye on the health of an American citizen in Arizona. Fast forward to present times, and remote healthcare is not only just confined to telecommunicated consultations and transferring MRI scans for analysis. In the present-day world, patients have the facility to remain in comfort in their homes and obtain excellent health care.
According to Marcus Grindstaff, COO of Care Innovations, “Remote patient management is all about moving more healthcare out of the traditional setting, into the house and where people live, work and play every day, and it's about using technologies to build the bridge that space between the traditional physical setting of healthcare, and where people really want to live every day.” In the modern-day world, healthcare is also about personalized treatment and personal tech products so that patients can have a pleasant experience of medical care without any complications.
As anticipated, the comfort elevates the patients’ obligation levels and by elevating obligation, remote patient monitoring can assist in enhancing the quality of medical care. And in conjunction with this, not only are patients encouraged to better engage with their own health, but the medical practitioners are also more equipped to comprehend and maintain their patients’ health circumstances along with a constant and clear picture of the patients’ health owing to the advanced remote healthcare.
In a broader view, the extensive acceptance of telemedicine technologies on a large scale across the world requires both medical professionals and patients to welcome and adopt the use of remote patient monitoring or remote healthcare devices that creditably offers healthcare workers the information they need to make precise diagnoses, record and recognize potential issues earlier and deliver appropriate medication at home to the patients.
Also, the patients have the comfort of getting advanced medical care with sophisticated functionalities and features of upgraded as well as portable equipment at home and round-the-clock, which are typically employed in hospitals.
Moreover, remote healthcare should not be misunderstood with fitness trackers and smart medical devices as remote patient monitoring devices are far more complicated than regular smart medical devices.
The remote healthcare technology comprises advanced artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies to track and comprehend one’s health condition over time and not just only analyze a continuous stream of real-time data.
Such advanced technologies in remote healthcare assist medical practitioners to analyze their patients remotely and make appropriate diagnoses, assign safe and effective drugs, and prescribe courses of treatment. In the same direction, the healthcare industry, in present times, is also observing accelerating investments to fuel the development of cloud computing and the swift communications networks as well as enterprise technologies are required to support management services, storage, and data collection.
Moreover, amid the global pandemic of Covid-19, such advanced digital health technologies are positively embellishing stakeholders’ credibility as well as awareness and thus, propelling favorable and lasting policy shifts.
As the world is battling with the global pandemic, advanced digital technologies like remote healthcare are emerging as a silver lining. Covid-19 poses a strong reason to employ remote healthcare devices more extensively, both for inspection of diagnosed Covid-19 patients, whether low-acuity, asymptomatic, or post-discharge, and to allow monitoring of non-covid patients who would otherwise have an in-person visit and risk their health.
Noticeably, the recent advancements in remote healthcare allow it to diagnose and treat patients with many chronic ailments including cardiovascular diseases. As per cdc.gov, around 655,000 Americans die from heart disease every year which is 1 in every 4 fatalities.
Favorably, remote healthcare carries the potential to allay the burden of cardiovascular disease and is particularly beneficial with regard to maintaining heart health. Nowadays, medical professionals or cardiologists across the world are employing some of these high-tech tools to better monitor patients with chronic heart conditions.
For instance, Bluetooth technology has the potential to examine patients with congestive heart failure who incur a risk of dangerous fluid retention for immediate and unforeseen weight gain with electronic scales. By the same token, other remote healthcare devices constantly track the heart’s electrical activity whether patients are working, sleeping, or working out and hence, offering a more thorough and clearer picture in comparison to one-time outcomes of an ECG administered in the clinician’s office.
In the nutshell, the advancements of remote healthcare and telemedicine technologies is also projected to affect the interaction of healthcare product manufacturers with regulatory bodies with regard to approval of novel products and technologies and shape the regulations and laws administering their use.