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Leveraging the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) to knock down “data walls” and optimize patient care

Transformation in medical care is often fueled by transformation in medical technology.

New tools and platforms can improve patient care, speed up and improve research in biotech and pharma, and optimize medical device development and testing. Concurrently, in all those cases (ideally, anyway), advances in tech can drive down costs.

Whether it’s a genetic testing lab in R&D stages with a handful of employees and a single lab, or an established health system with dozens of facilities and thousands of employees, healthcare companies are digitally transforming operations, development, service, and patient care.

The next wave in patient care

It’s in patient care where IoMT—the Internet of Medical Things—is starting to take the lead and drive transformation. Because it’s IMoT that is doing more to collect and deliver the data that fuels transformation, data impacting patient monitoring, safety, and organizational logistics.

For example, IoMT can be used to monitor a patient’s vital signs. Key metrics can be monitored and used to create a dashboard for providers to create a patient view that can provide real time feedback on a treatment plan or areas that a patient can improve. Providers can proactively work with their patients to address any health concerns or issues. By utilizing workflows, providers can share test results or diagnostic information via email or text messaging. Patients will no longer be waiting for a phone call that can be easily missed. This data can also be shared with caregivers so that they can collaborate in the treatment planning.

IoMT and AI can be combined to minimize falls, heart attacks and diabetic episodes. A wearable device can be utilized to track exercise, heart rates and blood oxygen levels. A continuous glucose monitor can update health records in seconds. This data combined can make a positive impact on the health and wellness of its owners. Treatment plans can be created to reduce or prevent complications and drive better health outcomes. This data can also be used to capture early diagnoses. 

A move toward interoperability

As it is with most organizations, so it is with healthcare. The data needed to improve operations (which can be, in some cases, often literal operations) can be siloed in separate systems.

Unlike other enterprises, sometimes healthcare can’t move everything to a single solution (e.g., patient data has very different regulatory requirements from, say, a manifest from a hospital cafeteria. So the focus is on interoperability.

Instead of moving to a large single solution, healthcare companies are utilizing common data models and utilizing technologies like AI and machine learning to structure data into patient centric solutions.

Interoperability allows for optimal patient experience and improved outcomes. E.g., if a patient has a diabetic episode, a healthcare provider can have a single view of the patient from multiple systems (EHR, EMR, ER Visit, continuous glucose monitor) to personalize a healthcare treatment plan. This single source of truth addressing patient’s concerns with prescription interactions and streamlines their healthcare experience.

Additionally, electronic health record systems are typically not designed to produce data in an accessible format for patients or healthcare providers, nor for easy data entry. Much of the time a healthcare provider is scheduled to spend with a patient is used to research or update medical records (we’ve all been there: in a doctor’s office, waiting half-dressed, as they go through files on a laptop).

Utilizing the single view of a patient concept from multiple systems, a single point of entry solution can be created to record a visit record or a treatment plan. Utilizing FHIR APIs, this information can be recorded in the aforementioned separate solutions. But by creating a single point entry with a holistic view of a patient, healthcare providers can spend more time with the patient, and less time on the laptop. 

Removing data walls “dynamically”

In a world of healthcare without data walls, a patient is at the center of the care experience.  Arbela healthcare solutions, built on Microsoft Dynamics 365, can be foundational in removing those walls — capturing critical data from IMoT, streamlining information flows, helping ensure compliance, and improving the patient experience.

Patients will find it easier to get the right care and treatment plans.  Providers will be able to tailor healthcare treatment plans to an individual and have all the data at their fingertips.  Healthcare will achieve its goal of elevating patient engagement and improving the experience of care through its use of digital transformation.

To learn more, watch our webinar Healthcare interoperability: Breaking through data walls to optimize patient care