Healing without touching (but it’s not Reiki)

An example of wireless fetal monitoring from the West Wireless Health Institute

Andy Oram from O’Reilly has written a beautiful report from the Medical Device Connectivity conference held in Boston last week. Manufacturers, doctors and administrators have been discussing there on how new sensing devices connected to communication networks can provide a better service to patients, and massive amounts of data to be analyzed to doctors.

The possibility of being monitored by the healthcare system during our daily activities, instead of spending long and painful hours, days or even weeks in hospitals, is not unrealistic nowadays. Wireless networks allow sensors to be connected in permanence to monitoring stations and, although data standards are yet to be fully established, smart and cheap sensors provided with open source and interoperating software are already available for practical use. Actually, this is not entirely new to our research team. At ISI in Turin, Italy, Ciro Cattuto and his collaborators have already already administered Rfid chips to hospital patients and doctors in order to reconstruct their social network and keep track of possible disease spreading among the staff and the patients. But the possible uses of remote sensing within the healthcare systems are almost infinite, and Oram report helps a lot in summarizing a bunch of them in a few lines.¬†Read more on the O’Reilly Radar blog.

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