A recent report from the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives and KLAS Research suggests that wearable devices have the potential to empower patients in their own healthcare. However, for broader adoption, health systems will need to improve security and connectivity.
Healthcare organizations that are making the most progress in this area are measuring the effectiveness of patient engagement tools and making changes to produce optimal results. These organizations are working to combine personal technologies and healthcare, with a focus on data security and interoperability. This has the potential to lead to more effective, proactive, and patient-centric care.
According to the report, the top uses for wireless technology among health IT executives surveyed included telehealth for clinicians, wireless Voice over Internet Protocol, video monitoring, cellular connectivity throughout premises, Radio Frequency Identification/Real-Time Location Systems, telemetry over Internet Protocol, wander management/patient elopement/infant abduction, and patient wearables integrated with the EHR. These findings are based on a survey representing the digital footprint of about 40% of U.S. hospitals.
The authors of the report also suggest that this will give patients a larger role in managing their health by empowering them with data about their own health status and enabling them to take a more active role in their care decisions. This is especially important as patients become more informed about healthcare technology and more comfortable using it in their daily lives.