Navigating the Healthcare IoT Journey, Part II

Bill Reeves, VP Customer and Product Marketing
1 Mar 2018, 16:47:24

In our last post, we explored the importance of having access to multi-carrier connectivity and platform capabilities. In this instalment, we will apply healthcare use cases to examine the importance of devices and solutions as well as device certification.

Devices and Solutions – Home Healthcare

Through end-to-end managed tablet solutions, home healthcare professionals can quickly and easily access patient data, regardless of Wi-Fi availability, to more efficiently deliver healthcare services outside of the doctor’s office. This is critical to provide the best possible care to older patients or those that may face mobility challenges, and those who live in remote areas.

Although the benefits are clear, Healthcare providers often face a number of challenges when deploying IoT-powered, tablet-based solutions – these can range from integration challenges with existing systems or applications, device security, or even scalability difficulties associated with managing multiple vendor relationships and logistical operations. By selecting a partner that can provide a true pre-integrated, managed solution as opposed to individual solution components, Healthcare providers can better allocate their resources to what matters most – providing quality care for patients.

Device Certification – PERS

Some older adults rely on personal emergency response systems (PERS) to call for help in case of emergency. With just a push of a button, these wearable, IoT-enabled devices automatically alert loved ones, caregivers, or first responders that the wearer is in need of help. For many, these devices are literal life savers.

PERS solutions have traditionally operated on 2G or 3G cellular networks to facilitate network connectivity, but as these networks are in the process of being phased out by carriers in the coming years, the physical PERS devices will need to be re-certified on LTE networks. Device certification is no easy task, as it often requires up to three separate certifications to meet federal, industry, and cellular operator regulations. These processes are time consuming, expensive, and complex, especially when internal resources are dedicated to the design and development of the device being certified. Timelines can range from months to even years, and costs can move upwards of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

With experience being a critical success factor, many companies choose to use a third-party vendor to guide them through the complexities of device certification. Selecting a partner with a thorough understanding of the regulatory bodies, established relationships with test labs, as well as experience resolving issues or failures – businesses benefit from a streamlined operation and are able to get their devices to market quicker, easier, and more cost effectively.