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Easy-to-use technology allowing seniors to perform everyday tasks brings a new world of technology to IoT solutions. Healthcare providers, caregivers, and even family members can benefit from IoT solutions for their seniors.

Overall Benefits of IoT Solutions in Healthcare

Healthcare providers are responsible for maintaining the mental and physical health of their seniors. Most healthcare providers can’t provide the level of attention needed in many cases without the help of IoT solutions.

  • Cost Reduction, Error Reduction, Improved Patient Experience, Reduced Hospital Admissions and Readmissions, Faster Disease Diagnosis, Better Drug and Equipment Management

Benefits of IoT Solutions for Seniors and Their Caregivers:

Health Monitoring:

  • Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) technology: This type of patient care leverages connected devices with IoT sensors to offer providers a continuous stream of real-time health data such as heart rate, blood pressure, and glucose monitoring.
  • Wearables such as the Apple Watch are now taking on more medical device functionality as tech companies eye a growing opportunity in the lucrative digital health industry. Wearables provide not only a medical benefit but also a safety benefit to seniors and their caretakers.
  • Maintaining cleanliness standards: IoT solutions can be used to trigger reminders for appropriate sanitary procedures when staff enter hospital rooms, helping to reduce infection rates. IoT can also provide specific and tailored reminders if certain cleaning protocols are required based on a patient’s needs.

Safety and Security:

  • Real-time location systems (RTLS), also known as real-time tracking systems, are used to automatically identify and track the location of people in real time. Automated data collection reduces human error and frees up staff to spend time on more valuable and complex tasks, such as patient care. Analytics related to resident trends and routines also enable communities to improve care and outcomes.
  • Motion sensors that alert a responder if no movement has been detected over a designated, long period of time. This means help will arrive faster if a patient experiences a fall or illness. IoT devices can also track changes in air quality, temperature, humidity, or carbon monoxide, notifying the homeowner or caregiver if levels go outside of an acceptable level.

Communications:

  • Senior-based communication platforms aid in socialization, health monitoring, and safety and security of seniors. Easy-to-use communication tools such as touch screen devices, monitoring and telehealth sensors alert caregivers for further action. These types of IoT solutions can also offer greater independence to seniors who are comfortable living more self-sufficiently.

What’s Next in IoT for Seniors:

  • Ultrasounds, thermometers, glucose monitors, electrocardiograms, and more are all starting to become connected and letting patients track their health. This is crucial for those situations that require follow-up appointments with doctors.
  • Smart beds which can sense the presence of a patient and automatically adjust to the correct angle and pressure to provide proper support without the need for a nurse to intervene.
  • Smart medication dispensers in the home could automatically upload information to the cloud and alert doctors when patients don’t take their medicine.
  • Apple Watch continues to advance its health features with each iteration – like its FDA-approved electrocardiogram (EKG) embedded in the Series 4, and both a menstrual health-tracking feature and a dedicated research app added to the Series 5.
  • Ingestible sensors: Doctors can avoid invasive probes of a person’s intestinal tract for some medical procedures. Ingestible devices free up time and offer convenience and comfort for the patient.