Hospitals Embrace Smart Medical Devices

The healthcare market is embracing the use of Internet of Things (IoT) and smart medical device technology to improve the quality of care and reduce costs.

The global market for smart medical devices is growing rapidly. The use of Internet of Things (IoT) solutions for critical operations in healthcare is increasing day by day to improve access to care, enhance quality and outcomes, and reduce the overall cost of care delivery.

While the idea of connecting medical devices to the network was originally centered around location tracking and some level of data reporting, the expansion of the IoT has taken smart medical devices to the next level. Using the technology, clinicians can glean important information about multiple aspects of patient health and quickly take steps to mitigate potential health problems.

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In the hospital, a combination of RFID tags, sensors, and other technology on medical devices and surgical instruments is providing new levels of insight into patient well-being as well as operational functions like sterilization processes, inventory management, and asset optimization.

According to Amanpreet Singh of Transparency Market Research, writing in RFID Journal, the market is segmented into therapeutic devices, diagnostic and monitoring devices, and injury prevention and rehabilitation devices. Of these, Singh says the diagnostic and monitoring devices segment is expected to dominate the global market.

According to Transparency’s data from 2016, the market for smart medical devices is expected to have a compound annual growth rate of 7.8 percent through 2024. North America currently leads in adoption, with smart medical device revenue at more than $15 billion in 2016. The European market was roughly half that during the same period in terms of market share, followed by Asia-Pacific, Latin America and the Middle East/Africa.

IoT-based healthcare systems will play an important role in the growth of medical information systems. Many hospitals around the world have implemented smart devices, providing an important way to track vital health information and create a data repository that can help guide diagnoses and care plan development.

With demand increasing, the major smart device and health solution providers in the market are expected to benefit from increased investments by healthcare facilities.

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Xerafy’s RFID Surgical Instruments Tracking Demo (Source: Xerafy)

Xerafy has carved out a niche in the smart medical device space through its surgical instrument tracking solutions, which combine RFID with advanced software to automate the counting, packaging, distribution, and sterilization of surgical instruments in the operating theater and elsewhere. By linking surgical instruments to the network, hospitals can not only improve patient safety, but also create new opportunities to optimize processes.

The use of RFID to track and connected medical devices and surgical instruments has been shown to improve patient safety, reduce errors, and increase efficiency. That has been borne out by a host of different studies and implementations. You can read about some of that data in our previous blog here.

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