According to a recent study conducted by Berg Insight®, the number of remotely monitored patients reached about 2.8 million by the end of 2012. Some of the conditions actively monitored are chronic diseases such as diabetes, asthma, and cardiac arrhythmia. Not only is this niche market growing at a compound annual growth rate of 26.9% but the overall market of integrating wireless connectivity in medical devices is seeing a growth rate of 46.3% from 1.03 million in 2012 to 7.1 million in 2017.
mHealth, or the use of mobile telecommunications and wireless technology integrated within medical devices and wireless healthcare delivery systems, has emerged in recent years as an important added value for hospitals. mHealth can improve the efficiency of care delivery and decrease costs. However, the rate of adoption of Wi-Fi® in medical devices remains relatively slow.
Recently, we asked hospital IT and medical device administrators to state their concerns with using Wi-Fi to connect medical devices to hospital networks. Concerns cited included security of sensitive information, interference with medical devices, and challenges of managing wireless devices and data on a large scale. Some of these concerns may be due to a general lack of experience with Wi-Fi by respondents, because hospital use of Wi-Fi to connect medical devices is showing signs of accelerating.
If you work in a hospital, then let us know what concerns you have – or you have heard expressed by coworkers – about using Wi-Fi to connect medical devices to hospital networks. We plan to address the most frequently cited concerns in a webinar series later this year.