Cardiovascular diseases are predominant cause of death accounting for approximately 30% of all total deaths worldwide. They are caused by various factors, mainly including high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, lack of exercise, obesity, high blood pressure and excessive alcohol consumption. Of these, High blood pressure accounts for 13% of the total cardiovascular deaths worldwide, while tobacco results in 9%, lack of exercise accounts for 6% where as obesity accounts for 5% respectively.
Keeping these stats in mind, the importance of relationships between patients and healthcare professionals is ever increasing, but a doctor or nurse cannot be in a room with the patient all day to monitor his conditions. As a result, variety of electronic equipment are being developed to monitor essential healthcare metrics such as activity of heart, blood pressure, body temperature, cardiac output and the amount of oxygen in blood. Remote Patient monitoring is technology that enables healthcare providers to monitor patients outside of the usual healthcare environment. It remains a vital aspect in strengthening the patient outcomes due to lack of trained medical staff by reducing costs.
The most promising applications for remote patient monitoring devices are monitoring cardiac rhythm & asthma patients, management of diabetes and hypertension. Researchers are using a wide range of innovative applications in remote patient monitoring to manage larger randomized pools of participants in various clinical trials. In the past few years a lot of hospitals and healthcare systems are continuously adopting remote patient monitoring and analytics into their care processes, but there’s a long way to go before these get into implementation. A recent study revealed that 84% of the providers are investing in remote patient monitoring solutions to monitor patients after discharge.
Technological advancements have brought about innovative devices that can track patient health and trigger alarm bell when significant changes occur. It is estimated that across the world 3 million patients are connected through some form of remote monitoring devices at their home. This figure is going to increase multifold due to growing healthcare concerns. Cardiac rhythm management accounted for the two third of the connected devices. While sleep therapy represented about 0.54 million people, driven by upsurge incidences obstructive sleep apnea. Telehealth is relatively a small market and has accounted for 0.34 million connections and many companies are expanding their connected solutions supporting telehealth.
A major ongoing trend in the healthcare today is the accumulation and analysis of big data which offers a major area of research and new treatment opportunities for patients. Recently United States Food and Drug Administration have cleared Health Patch MD, a biosensor to revolutionize the way health is measured and tracked. Health Patch MD has received FDA clearance for sale in the US, CE Mark for distribution in EU, Ninsho certification in Japan, and it also registered for distribution in Canada.
Boston Scientific has received United States Food and Drug Approval for the EMBLEM MRI(S-ICD), a treatment option for patients at risk of sudden cardiac arrest, which reduces further complications. It also received CE mark earlier this year and began commercialization in Europe. Nokia acquired French consumer electronics company Withings. Withings devices are designed to provide users with insight about their health, by analyzing data related to health including, activity, weight, heart and sleep. It also provides personalized feedback and coaching to achieve health targets. Clearly today`s healthcare trends indicate that both government and private institutions are emphasizing the requirement for more sophisticated remote patient monitoring technology in a cost-effective manner, which is truly the need of the hour.
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