IoT in healthcare can dramatically optimize workflow and staffing. Even a basic IoT solution can collect and bring together such data as staff location and expertise, patient acuity and location, and availability and location of critical diagnostic and therapeutic equipment. Once modeled, this data can help staffing managers improve workflows and make better staffing and scheduling decisions. The data can also be used to understand the movement of people and assets, and to predict where staffing and equipment will be needed most the next day or in the weeks ahead. Ideally, healthcare facilities will be able to move to appropriate dynamic, on-demand scheduling and resource allocation schemes. This would ensure that the right people are assigned to the right places to efficiently deliver quality care while improving staff morale and patient satisfaction.
Using IoT in healthcare, we can finally begin to tackle the critical problem of alert fatigue in clinical care delivery. This occurs when care providers receive too many clinical alerts – with up to 99 percent of them being false alarms. Alert fatigue is directly responsible for growing numbers of patient injuries and deaths.1
With IoT in healthcare, there are many ways to improve patient care and safety. For example, hospitals can use smart, connected monitoring devices that are linked to patient records, pharmacy systems, room location, nursing staff schedules and more. The sensors in these smart devices collect data, which is integrated with other medical device and system data and then analyzed to determine whether to trigger a silent alarm for a noncritical event or an audible alarm for a life-critical event. In this way, IoT will increase confidence in alarms, reduce work load and drive timely action – keeping patients safer.