December 9th 2013
“There’s no need to wait for a revolution in Healthcare; the technology’s already here”
Steve Kelly Eseye Head of Healthcare
Health services all around the world are under strain; while some struggle to provide even the most basic services, others are under pressure to meet targets and patient demand, facing government fines and even legal battles. In the UK alone where the industry faces a spending reduction of £20 billion by 2015, the time is ripe for M2M solutions.
M2M is the key to better resource management. From more efficient equipment maintenance to lifting the burden of routine check-ups, uptake of solutions already available is key to building an altogether healthier Healthcare industry.
Central to the range of M2M solutions is the principle of patient empowerment. One of the simplest ways to lighten the load of healthcare professionals is to enable patients to carry out their own routine check-ups remotely, ensuring urgent care goes to those most in need. With M2M connections set to increase to 2.9 billion by 2022, industry leaders and decision makers must explore the solutions already available to ensure resources are maximised and lives are improved. M2M in Healthcare is the perfect example of how technology can give better life quality and control to people so they can better understand their own health.
Connected devices such as glucometers, GPS trackers and movement sensors help the elderly or the ill live more comfortably at home, enabling data and alerts to be sent securely to a professional when needed. Devices like this have already saved lives, yet we are still a long way off them being just part of a new basic level of care. If we raise our expectations, this new standard of care can come about rapidly. The solutions are already here.
The need for telehealthcare now and in the future is clear. Medicine and healthcare has advanced to the point that growing populations across Europe and North America are living longer. We’re now at a stage where technology can allow many more people to care for themselves. In the UK, the number of people aged 65+ is set to rise to 12.2 million by 2020, a significant increase from 10.5 million in 2011. Longer life expectancy teamed with the changing culture of families living farther apart, places substantial demands on health and social care services. Connected devices and monitoring systems to help keep people living independently for longer, helps reduce the demands on healthcare professionals and providers.
Glucometers and heart monitors that allow a patient to monitor their own health, while delivering data securely to a healthcare professional can improve the lives of millions of people living with illnesses like heart disease and diabetes.
The technology is available now to transform health and social care. We can deliver Self Care – putting patients in the driving seat so they can help themselves. Patients want greater involvement in their own healthcare. They want to manage their conditions themselves; they are intelligent, informed and motivated. 800,000 people live with dementia, an illness that can be managed through some of the following solutions.
Examples of M2M solutions in healthcare
In-Home Person Activity Tracking System, enabled by Eseye
Movement sensors are placed in each room of the person’s house.
The room sensors connect to a Hub unit that is also deployed in the person’s house.
The hub uses an Eseye AnyNet multi-network SIM to send activity data on the person’s daily movements to a central database which can then be accessed by relatives/carers to monitor activity and also set up alerts if no activity is made.
As a person goes about their daily life, they trigger the movement sensors.
There is no need for a phone line or broadband.
Personal alarms from, enabled by Eseye
A locate device has been designed to find people who wander due to conditions such as dementia. The design is simple, with no confusing lights or buttons. It is small and light and can be carried in a leather belt pouch, as a key fob, worn as a pendant or even put in a pocket or bag. The device will operate up to 48 hours between battery charges. It uses GPS to work out the wearer’s location, accurate to around 10 metres.
An Alarm device incorporates GPS and uses the mobile phone network to send an accurate location to a response centre, allowing two-way conversation. The device has the latest GPRS technology and uses Eseye’s AnyNet multi-network SIM to ensure that so long as a mobile network exists the device will always stay connected. When the alarm is activated, an operator in the response centre will answer the call. The user’s location will appear on their monitor. GPS will ensure the location is accurate to around 10 metres.
Easy Telecare mobile phones, enabled by Eseye
Easy-to-use mobile phones, especially suited to the elderly. They feature:
- Simple menus
- Emergency button on back of phone
- ‘Point the way’ function for navigation
- Transmit an alarm via SMS using Secure SA protocol or via GPRS using Secure IP protocol
- Hearing Aid Compatible (HAC)
- Eseye’s AnyNet multi-network SIM
With our engineering expertise we have integrated and enabled mobile connectivity across a range of healthcare devices from glucometers, dementia and Alzheimer’s location devices, telecare mobile and in-home devices and digital scales for patient weight monitoring.
The technology provides tools that empower individuals to stay healthy as part of their overall medical care, so more people can take control of their health.
We already have the ability to monitor vital signs on a daily basis, which can help identify causes of exacerbations, allowing the patient to alter their behaviour or how they deal with their help to prevent recurrences. M2M solutions take the strain off both carers and healthcare professionals, whilst also benefitting the patients immensely, improving their overall quality of life.
The need for innovative telecare and telehealth solutions is clear. The challenge is to change the mind-set of a sceptical and conservative healthcare sector so decision makers are aware of the full range of potentially live-savings solutions that are available right now.
Eseye in Healthcare
Eseye are an independent Machine to Machine (M2M) solutions provider. Through our technical and industry expertise, we are able to provide a true end-to-end solution. We can deliver:
- Connected devices and processes – routers, gateways, meters, modems, bespoke devices
- Device connectivity – global coverage, AnyNet SIMs, embedded SIMs, bespoke SIM solutions
- Connectivity management – Eseye private APN, data management and analytics, diagnostics
We design, build and operate highly innovative M2M technology – our pioneering AnyNet SIM connects devices to any mobile network, so if one is experiencing outages or is not available in a particular area the devices will automatically switch to an alternative network. We have our own private worldwide APN which is monitored and managed by us 24/7. This allows us to deliver a fully managed end-to-end service for our customers’ devices for data, SMS and voice.
With our engineering expertise we have enabled mobile connectivity for many types of devices across multiple industries. In some cases we have delivered full product design with optimisation of data transfers to a small efficient footprint so connectivity becomes cost effective. In addition to this, through our private global network we can provide lifetime management of the connectivity, understanding the context and business rules so we know when a device is not behaving properly.
Healthcare is the industry that stands to benefit the most from M2M solutions and with the range of solutions available today, there’s no reason not to make improvements right now. We understand the needs of our clients, and in Healthcare, perhaps even more than in any other field, we know that every connection matters.
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