Mobile Future

Prescription for Wireless Healthcare

With the exception of
reducing the Digital Divide, probably the greatest social benefit from wireless
technology is its potential to improve access to more affordable
healthcare.  We’ve blogged a lot about
this (see here, here and here) and now
thanks to Venuri Siriwardane at the Newark Star-Ledger
, there’s
even more evidence.

As
an example, Siriwardane cites fuzzy bedroom slippers with pressure sensors in
the soles which wirelessly transmit movement data, including information that
the wearer may be more likely to fall. 

Of
greater potential benefit, researchers are pouring research funding into the
development of cost-effective wireless audio and video consultation services so
doctors may interact remotely with patients in real time.

 The
reason for this is not hard to discern:

Remote
patient monitoring alone can generate between 20 percent to 40 percent in
savings, said Chris Wasden, managing director of health industries strategy and
innovation at PricewaterhouseCoopers…. 
Wasden [explained] that telehealth is much more common in developing
countries such as India, where cell phones enable people to receive health care
in remote areas that once lacked access to modern medicine. "They’ve already
developed the ability to deliver mobile health care to their people, but we’re
behind the times on that."

Better
healthcare.  More affordable access.  That’s the mobile future.