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Sunday, 10 April 2016

Wireless Health: Its Advantages and Disadvantages

Wireless health is actually much more present than you should imagine. In fact, a baby monitor fulfills all roles to qualify as a wireless health device. It helps pick up signals from babies in need for something, and transmit that signal through means of wireless data transmission locally. The fact that cry of a baby doesn’t usually imply health issues doesn’t matter. It reveals their physiological needs a baby can’t satisfy on his or her own, thus prompting an action of the elders to take actions considered as care. Knowing that the first wireless baby monitor appeared in 1937, it’s clear that the wireless health concept is way older than mHealth, eHealth and other similar concepts.

Advantages

Wireless health technologies have already found broad applications in these four areas:
  • Patient health stats monitoring
  • Mobile wireless biosensor systems.
  • Wireless patient tracking.
  • Wireless surgery.
Wireless technologies applied in healthcare can improve many procedures by making them easier, faster, cheaper, more precise, more convenient and comfortable for patients, allowing them to be more mobile. Wireless health devices benefit from advancement of battery technology, big data storage, advanced materials, nanotechnology, and biosensor technology. Materials applied are also sterile and there’s almost no risk of infection.
Wireless surgery is perhaps the most revolutionary thing about wireless health. The ideas that a pacemaker can be so tiny that it can be injected into bloodstream close to the body surface, or that a gastrointestinal endoscopic capsule can contain surgical instruments to operate in the patient’s bowel are very close to reality.

Disadvantages

Wireless health devices are leading edge stuff in medical technology. Their development requires huge investments in development resources, talent and testing which entails high pricing. Cost of use per patient for many wireless health procedures may be too high for most patients, and health insurance bodies, being state sponsored or private, might be hesitant to their fast introduction. However, having Moore’s law in mind we can assume that these devices will become better and cheaper in the future, making these affordable for most patients.
Effects of electromagnetic field exposure from wireless radio networks utilized by wireless health devices is not of a significant importance in most cases. On the other hand, some patients suffer from disorders which may prevent use of wireless technology in treating them. Electromagnetic hypersensitivity is the most common example.