Hyper-Connected World – IoT and Implications for Healthcare


Internet of Things (IoT) is the new big buzzword, in the technology innovation.  It enables objects that contain embedded technology to interact with internal states or external environment.  As I see it, IoT is about empowering devices to gather and share information directly with each other, with people, and over the cloud, making it easier, convenient, faster, cheaper, and more effective to collect, record, and analyze data streams. Thus far internet empowered people to easily access information.  IoT will empower devices and finally, this will give a way to put data to use, in real time and it can help solve all sorts of interesting challenges, across a range of industries.  In May, 2014 two fantastic conferences will discuss IoT.  TiEcon 2014 has a track dedicated to discussing IoT and HealthTech Forum has a panel to discuss the impact of IoT on Healthcare.  See below registration details.

I am most interested in IoT’s application in the life science industry.  Apparently IoT is likely to revolutionize healthcare.  Currently, it is people who enable most of the flow of communication.  For instance, consider a patient in critical condition who needs to be constantly monitored and his vital signs checked by a healthcare professional.  Now consider that instead of a professional coming in at regular intervals, this can be done with automated flow of information.  People have a limited bandwidth.  People’s limits in attention span, time etc. can and do lead to all sorts of errors.  But technology has advanced and there are smart sensors that can collect, record, and analyze patient data more easily.  We already have smart sensors and connectivity to make all this possible.  And yet, right now only 1% of things are connected, according to Joseph Bradley, General Manager of Cisco Consulting Services.

Now consider a world of such connectivity that every one of over a trillion everyday items have at least some ability to store and process information.  The Internet of Things promises to be the most disruptive technological revolution since the advent of the World Wide Web.  Projections are that over a 100 billion uniquely identifiable objects will be connected to the internet by the year 2020.

Kevin Ashton, General Manager at Belkin, who coined the term “The Internet of Things”, envisions a world of such connectivity where not only trillion everyday items store, process and share information but they can also share that information, over the global internet with other trillion items.  Imagine connected roads where the information of slowing traffic is instantly connected through sensors embedded in the roads so other less busy roads can instantly open up carpool lanes to everyone.  Now imagine a smart bandaid that directly communicates to the physician whether the diabetic foot ulcer wound is healing or getting worse and timely intervention can save an amputation.

English: internet Español: internet

English: internet Español: internet (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the life science arena, the implications of such connectivity will be huge.  Not only it will make hospital and nursing facility stays shorter and care more affordable, but home healthcare will become routine as monitoring becomes easier.  It will have implications for the aging population.  An American turns 50, every 7 seconds  http://bit.ly/1ivIWhf.  Most older individuals would prefer to live in their own homes for as long as they can.  Sensors and systems like Lively http://bit.ly/11iBk7g are working on making this possible.  Living in a hyper connected world is not going to be free of challenges.  IoT will raise many new questions and challenges, some of them technical but also many moral and philosophical.

See discount codes to register for TiEcon 2014, www.tiecon.org and for Health Technology Forum

www.tiecon.org – If you are a professional  in #healthIT, #digital health,  #internetofthings, #cloud, #bigdata or related, then this is the conference, you don’t want to miss – It offers a fabulous opportunity to network with 3000+ professionals and listen to top notch speakers and panelists.  Register for #TiEcon (May 16 & 17 at Santa ClaraConvention Center) as my guest, at link http://tinyurl.com/kr2hkcw  & enter promo code tievalue to get $100 discount.

Healthtechnology Forum conference http://www.healthtechnologyforum.com, focused on exploring pathways to sustainable health, is on May 20 in SF. Please register for the conference as my friend, with the discount code “HTF14-FriendOfOrganizer” and send me your first & last name at wd_darshana at hotmail dot com, to get $150 off the price of the ticket.  Also check out & participate in code-a-thon on patient engagement, for May 8.  Over 20K+ in prizes.

JOBS: are posted at the link http://bit.ly/1o85CTM

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