Objects connected to the service of our health
As the population ages and medical advances make it necessary, the demand for care is growing. At the same time, connected objects are more and more present around us. The entire healthcare sector is benefiting from e-health and more specifically from the Internet of Things (IoT). The power of prevention, the quality of monitoring, the ease of treatment: a mini overview of solutions and the benefits of the trend.
First solution: using the smartphone to collect health data. Connected in 2G/3G/4G/5G or WiFi, the smartphone includes, in addition to a GPS, an accelerometer, several cameras and a large memory. Huawei's Kirin 970 or Apple's A11 Bionic chips are powerful enough to run Artificial Intelligence programs. Enough to collect and process a lot of data.
Interfaced with e-health applications and external devices, the smartphone becomes the increasingly secure device for storing shared medical records thanks to the DMP App for Health Insurance, available on the AppStore and GooglePlay. Unless you prefer to use a digitized and secure health book like the one from La Poste. Either way, it will be necessary to manage the application and mobile fleets, to guarantee their confidentiality with an Enterprise Mobility Management solution.
Apart from smartphones, a plethora of connected objects monitor and communicate with us thanks to dedicated long-distance networks with low power consumption, LPWAN (Sigfox proprietary network, LoRa open source network promoted by Bouygues and Orange, or the LPWAN of the French Qowisio).
Slipped into our clothes (IoT wearable), ingested in the form of a capsule (e.g. BodyCap), worn under the skin or on the skin (Fitbit bracelet), the connected object automates the measurement. It reacts if necessary: triggering an alarm, dispensing a medication or simply reporting to the attending physician. Its connection to the Internet of Things (IoT) saves lives and there is no doubt that mastering network and telecom infrastructures will be a key issue.
Just as serious is the object of daily life modified into a connected e-health object. The more it is in contact with the body, the more relevant it is: toothbrush, bathroom scale, toilet or bathroom mirror. For example, Wize Mirror analyzes your breath, your movements and your skin. It determines whether you should see a cardiologist thanks to its on-board artificial intelligence. Embedded intelligence means operating system, database and Machine Learning to keep the device up to date.
Connected e-health is also a solution for opening up medical deserts. Once the data has been collected, it is necessary to consult or even operate. A high-definition connected camera, on a high-speed network secured by VPN, at Lifesize for example, allows a doctor to make a precise diagnosis without being hindered by distance. Finally, by connecting surgical robots like Versius to the Internet, one can operate remotely or operate inside the body, almost without scarring.
The Haute Autorité de Santé is preparing its e-health certifications, which are essential for establishing the confidence of the public and professionals. Our relationship with health will evolve. The level of service expected by connected e-health is high. Being ill will be considered tomorrow as an incomprehensible anomaly. The transformation of health into a consumer product will erase the notion of the patient. But it will also restore value to the notion of prevention.
For IT professionals, in addition to technological innovation, the ability to manage, maintain and secure this huge pool of connected objects, thanks to a 24/7 Service Desk specialized in consumer electronics products, will be crucial for the success of e-health.