As technology improves, wearables in healthcare are becoming more and more popular. This is hardly surprising. From monitoring vitals around the clock to making the documentation process easier on practitioners, wearable technology affords some unique benefits.
Healthcare in Real Time
One of the main contributions wearables are currently making to healthcare is health monitoring. You no longer have to confine a person to the bed and hook them up to clunky machinery to get the necessary data.
- heart rate
- heart rhythm
- blood oxygen saturation
- sleep patterns
- blood pressure
- movement (walking, running, fall)
All these (and more) can be measured using a smart watch. Days, weeks, and months of statistical data help correctly assess the wearer’s health. And you don’t need to lend out expensive apparatus; watches are available at any tech store.
A frequently asked question about health wearables is whether they are accurate enough to be used for treating and diagnosing diseases. These doubts are still here because we remember all too well the first generations of wearable tech.
Luckily, things have gotten much, much better during the decade. Now doctors can rely on wearables for recording vitals, and there are even ECG watches approved by the FDA.
Wearables For the Doctor
A less obvious application of wearables in healthcare would be catering to the medical practitioners themselves.
Since the paperwork has been abandoned in lieu of electronic records (EHR), there is a lot of typing going on at the hospitals. Some information needs to be memorised before it can be recorded. For the doctors who use regular notebooks, their notes have to be transferred into the computer. According to a study, American doctors waste two-thirds of their time filling out forms.
Wearable recorders converting speech to text on the fly have emerged as the high-tech solution to the problem.
Devices like Senstone Scripter allow physicians to record a patient’s data once – and transfer it between devices instantly while the AI makes sure there will be no spelling mistakes.
Although some smartphone apps can be used to a similar effect, wearables have the advantage of being hands-free.
Their other strong point is the lack of intrusive notifications. You are free to concentrate on one task at a time and enter a state of deep focus.
A wearable recorder has long battery life, too; a doctor doesn’t have to juggle texting, calls, and recording trying to make the phone last longer.
In conclusion, wearables and healthcare seem to have found each other. The former have improved to the point where a store-bought product can be used to reliably monitor health conditions. The latter has been successfully implementing wearable technology for years. Cardiology is the field most well-known for its application of wearables, but we can see other fields (like neurology) catching up to it already.
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