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The United Nations predicts that the number of people who are 60 or older today – 841,000,000 – will increase to 2 billion by 2050. The sheer number of patients needing care will place an additional burden on healthcare organisations, which are already struggling due to tightened budgets and a lack of resources. Add to this the fact that the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates up to 40% of resources spent on healthcare are wasted, in part due to antiquated processes and systems. An array of advanced technology solutions is available to improve patient care and keep operational costs in line – but the healthcare industry lags behind in implementing some of those solutions.
Based on information communication technology, as well as wireless and mobile communication protocols, an intelligent healthcare infrastructure builds efficiency across an organisation. Acting as the central nervous system of a hospital, the infrastructure integrates and enables communication between traditionally disparate systems, such as power, building management, security and IT. When a hospital’s systems can “talk” with each other, the infrastructure as a whole is stronger and makes effective use of all resources.
In my blog, Two Trends Worth Following when Designing New Healthcare Facilities, I introduced the concept of an intelligent infrastructure and briefly touched on the benefits that extend to patient care and the hospital’s bottom line. In this blog, we expand on this topic with eight specific ways hospitals can benefit from an intelligent infrastructure.
8 Benefits of an Intelligent Healthcare Infrastructure
In many countries, patients can choose their treatment centres, which means hospitals must compete. A patient’s overall experience depends upon diverse factors, such as medical staff attention, catering, housekeeping and the facility itself. Through wireless communication, an intelligent technology infrastructure enhances overall patient experience and hospital efficiency by:
1. Allowing medical staff to access patient files from anywhere to make informed care decisions
2. Empowering nursing staff to react quickly to a patient’s needs
3. Ensuring patient comfort through personal control of room lighting, temperature, window blinds and more
4. Satisfying a patient’s desire to communicate with family and friends via email or other web services
5. Increasing staff productivity by decreasing time needed to manage systems and locate equipment
6. Promoting energy efficiency by controlling and monitoring energy sources
7. Saving capital expenses on devices, cabling, and commissioning for new construction or upgrades
8. Reducing operational expenses through reliable network availability, scalability, and rapid system diagnosis and repair
Learn more ways to improve the patient journey and hospital financial health in this intelligent infrastructure white paper.
In what other ways do you believe an intelligent infrastructure could help hospitals? What systems do you wish could communicate with each other and why?
Share your responses in the “Leave a Reply” box below or tweet us @SE_Healthcare.