Digital Twins: How IoT Data can Further Improve the Healthcare Experience

Miguel Garcia, EVP, Product and Services Management, KORE

In this space, we’ve been discussing the possibilities of using IoT applications to solve costs and revenue leakage for healthcare providers, and to streamline clerical tasks that can often reduce facetime healthcare practitioners have with their patients.

The power of IoT is truly realized when data from the real-world is securely transformed to the digital realm—this is commonly referred to as creating “digital twins.” By “instrumenting” the real-world to provide near real-time data, and by applying the powerful tools and methods of the analytical and artificial intelligence fields, digital twins can speed the creation of new and revolutionary healthcare IoT applications.

With this insight created by digital twins, healthcare organizations will not only see patterns of inefficiency, but they will gain deeper understanding of why these inefficiencies occurred in the first place. By doing so, they can create innovative best practices to correct the problem and minimize the possibility of them reoccurring. Consider the following next-step discoveries that data from IoT can unlock once digital twinning has been created:

  • Minimized billing errors – Manual entry by overextended healthcare workers can lead to billing errors and revenue leakage. IoT data can uncover more efficient means to determine how to charge supplies and services to appropriate patients.
  • Reduced patient wait times – Efficient data entry and location of assets can speed up the admittance process and improve care outcomes. Unnecessary wait times endanger and increase the costs of service because of lower asset utilization and negatively impact the patient experience.
  • Accurate inventorying – Real-time consumption data can lead to faster replenishment of supplies and prevent over-inventorying, which can lead to spoilage.
  • Safer environments – Epidemiology data can help hospital staffers to track where infectious agents may exist and who could be at risk by contact.

Using data extrapolated from IoT applications can cut down the time necessary to find things and speed up data entry, but it can also lead to new learnings that can further assist a hospital to be more efficient, safer and improve the overall patient experience.

When we expand the reach of IoT beyond fixed healthcare facilities to mobile clinics, home or hospice wellness management or telemedicine, the applications of a connected digital twin are truly industry changing. These are just examples of business-oriented IoT applications; there are even more sophisticated applications that rely on deeper digital twining of a patient’s health functions.

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