Since our last newsletter, several countries have been experiencing a second wave of COVID-19 and have unfortunately been seeing a fresh spike in cases. Undoubtedly, COVID has significantly and negatively affected many industries and the worldwide economy. Recessions and economic impacts of COVID have become hot topics and new concerns for governments. However, less emphasis and attention has been given to healthcare mainstreams and daily operations.
It’s been a tough time for healthcare lately, having been under increased pressure due to the imbalance between demands and available resources. Unfortunately, COVID has imposed further complexities to the situation. The number of offered healthcare elective services has decreased with some being discontinued completely in order to shift the healthcare resources to more critical and life-threatening situations. At the same time, our vulnerable population such as the elderly are avoiding their routine healthcare visits and examinations. Hospitalised patients and people with chronic diseases have also been affected.
COVID has forced most healthcare industries around the world to embrace technology and shift the care from inpatients to outpatients and from hospitals to patients’ premises. This has seen a growth in telehealth and telemedicine adoption around the globe including in New Zealand.
Digital technologies are therefore seen as the key enablers of digital transformation in healthcare to support it to cope with the increasing demands for medical services. In New Zealand, clinicians at Waitematā District Health Board (DHB) delivered 10,000 telehealth appointments over one week in August this year.
IoT could be a significant digital technology in this space and could help move the telehealth services to the next level by enabling the remote and continuous monitoring of different health parameters of patients. There are some concerns around privacy and security of using IoT in healthcare that have recently improved significantly; so can we really ignore this technology when it could help address several healthcare challenges? Watch this space!
IoT in November
In other news, we are excited to announce we have two IoT Connect events coming up this month. Find out all about the latest Ohmio autonomous vehicle trials in Auckland, and in Hamilton enjoy a more general catch up at the IoT Waikato Meetup.
The team at the NZ IoT Alliance
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