Of course, there will still be instances when we have to be treated in the hospital, and also there, smart connected solutions have transformative potential, for example in intensive care units (ICUs).
Already today, hospitals can be equipped with advanced technology – combining software, clinical decision support algorithms and mobile connectivity – that allows clinicians to monitor multiple critically ill patients remotely, in real time. Through such a so-called eICU system, they can spot potential problems early and act on them faster than ever before, ensuring that fewer issues will spiral into life-threatening problems.
This technology could also mean the end of something that has long been the bugbear of healthcare professionals – nightshifts. Recently, Philips has worked with two hospitals in Atlanta, Georgia and Perth, Western Australia on a new remote intensive care monitoring program that advances the globalization of critical care. With this system, daytime clinicians in Perth provide nighttime critical care support to patients in Atlanta, meaning a reduced nightshift burden for healthcare professionals there.
We’re not far away from this kind of technology being commonplace. Hospitals in the near future will be safer for patients and better places for healthcare professionals to work. In the context of digitalization, healthcare will soon catch up, and – just like in every other area of our lives – digital technology will be fully integrated to give us a smoother, smarter experience that better fits our lives.
 Future Health Index. (2017). FFQ4. Which, if any, of the following innovations in healthcare technology do you think will have the MOST positive impact on citizens of your country taking care of their health?