The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT)

The Internet of Medical Things is sometimes called the Internet of Health Things. It is inspired by the growing field of Industry 4.0, more commonly known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The term is popular on social media channels to describe the connection between patients, physicians, and the healthcare industry.

The idea behind the Internet of Medical Things is to bring the functionality of today’s web browsers into the healthcare world. The need for a middleman in online healthcare transactions is diminishing thanks to emerging technologies like blockchain. Patients can now securely receive their healthcare data from suppliers and payers using cryptocurrency.

For example, when a physician uploads a patient’s test results into the medical records system, this data can be accessed by any authorized medical personnel for that patient’s lifetime. Another example is that connected devices that can alert patients or caregivers if their vital signs become dangerously low or high. The potential to improve the quality of life for patients while also lowering healthcare costs is huge.

While using advanced information technology in healthcare can improve care delivery, reduce costs, and improve patient outcomes, these benefits remain unproven. They may be outweighed by the increasing complexity of care that these technologies introduce. Although these new methods of medical information exchange have the potential to improve the doctor-patient relationship and enhance the care that clinicians provide, their effects on clinical practice and medical education remain to be seen.

Why Did the World Need the Internet of Medical Things?

Blockchain technology and emerging digital currencies like cryptocurrency offer compelling solutions to some of the healthcare industry’s major issues. Thanks to these technologies, online marketplaces for health insurance and healthcare services have emerged and will continue to evolve, offering patients greater transparency and choice regarding their care.

The healthcare industry is undergoing a fundamental transformation as more and more services move online, creating a web of information that connects physicians, patients, health insurers, and suppliers in the medical devices and pharmaceutical industries. Thanks to emerging technologies, the middlemen that currently exist in many healthcare transactions—medical schools, healthcare organizations, and professional associations—will become even more redundant as patients have more control over their care and can interact directly with those providing it. Allowing patients to manage their care from the comfort of their homes, wherever they may be, promises to improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare.

Many experts predict that Industry 4.0—the Fourth Industrial Revolution, as defined by the World Economic Forum—will fundamentally change how we interact with technology and the workplace. Similarly, the idea of the Internet of Medical Things proposes that the internet’s functionality and applications can be extended into healthcare and that healthcare organizations can adopt new ways of working and communicating, creating better patient outcomes and an improved experience for clinicians.

IoMT Is Here to Stay

  • The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) Is A Trend That Will Not Die

If you spend time on social media channels like Twitter or LinkedIn, you will most certainly have encountered the term “Internet of Medical Things.” 

While the exact meanings of “Internet of Medical Things” and “IoMT” vary from user to user, they generally refer to the connection between patients, physicians, and the healthcare industry made possible by emerging technologies like blockchain.

The need for a middleman in online healthcare transactions is diminishing thanks to emerging technologies like blockchain. Patients can now securely receive their healthcare data from suppliers and payers using cryptocurrency.

For example, when a physician uploads a patient’s test results into the medical records system, this data can be accessed by any authorized medical personnel for that patient’s lifetime. Another example is connected devices that can alert patients or caregivers if their vital signs become dangerously low or high. The potential to improve the quality of life for patients while also lowering healthcare costs is huge.

  • It Is Fuelling The Next Big Phase Of The Evolution Of Medicine

Thanks to emerging technologies and the “Evolving Medicine” trend, the need for the Internet of Medicine will not die out as patients gain greater access to their personal health information and can take a more active role in their care and that of their family members. As more and more medical services move online and the ability to collect, analyze, and present large amounts of data improves, patients will better understand their health status and be able to play a more active role in their care. This trend bodes well for Industry 4.0 and the emerging field of the Internet of Medicine.

  • It Offers A Remedy To The Opioid Crisis

An additional layer of complexity added to the equation by the opioid crisis is that as the practice of medicine becomes more and more “digitized,” as patients have more access to their personal health information, they may also have more opportunities to become addicted to opioids. While the advent of fentanyl and similar synthetic opioids has made treating patients much easier, the increased access to information about the drugs also means that physicians and other healthcare practitioners must look for signs of addiction in their patients. Patients have increasingly easy access to information about their conditions and treatments. They may opt to self-diagnose and self-manage rather than follow the recommended course of treatment as laid out by a doctor. The advent of the Internet of Medicine and all that it brings with it—greater access to information, more transparency, and more choice—may make it easier for patients to stay on the right track, regardless of the dangers presented by opioid use.

Despite the many benefits offered by the Internet of Medicine and the growing trend of patients having greater control over their care and the ability to play an active role in improving their health outcomes, the field is still in its early stages. A significant learning curve exists for clinicians and other healthcare personnel who seek to adopt these methods.

The Future Of Healthcare Looks Bleak

Thanks to the growing trend of patients having greater access to their personal health information and the ability to play an active role in managing their care, the future of healthcare looks rather bleak as organizations, businesses, and governments seek to minimize expenses, maximize efficiencies, and make care more patient-centered. In many countries, including the United States, healthcare expenditures continue to rise while the quality of care remains stagnant.

Against this backdrop, the idea and utility of the Internet of Medical Things are to bring the functionality of today’s web browsers into the healthcare world. The need for a middleman in online healthcare transactions is diminishing thanks to emerging technologies like blockchain. Patients can now securely receive their healthcare data from suppliers and payers using cryptocurrency.

The healthcare industry is undergoing a fundamental transformation as more and more services move online, creating a web of information that connects physicians, patients, health insurers, and suppliers in the medical devices and pharmaceutical industries. Thanks to emerging technologies, the middlemen that currently exist in many healthcare transactions—medical schools, healthcare organizations, and professional associations—will become even more redundant as patients have more control over their care and can interact directly with those providing it. Allowing patients to manage their care from the comfort of their homes, wherever they may be, promises to improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare.

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