• Irma Rastegayeva

Enabling Technology for Telemedicine



With the Coronavirus Pandemic intensifying around the world, Telemedicine is experiencing a surge in popularity and use. But its “overnight success” during COVID-19 is only possible because of the work that has been done in the last decade or so, and also because of the availability of the many enabling technologies that make it possible.


The benefits of Telemedicine were numerous even before the Coronavirus Pandemic made this technology vital. For years, the driving factors for Telehealth adoption by patients included time and cost savings, stigma for certain specialties (like mental health), physical immobility, or lack of qualified providers in the area. With cases of COVID-19 in the US quickly rising to surpass one million, and most of the country under stay-at-home orders, Telemedicine is quickly becoming an essential service that allows healthcare to be safe for both medical providers and patients.


Before the coronavirus, more than 75% of medical resources were used to treat patients with chronic health conditions, the majority of them being the elderly. These are the exact populations that are at higher risk of serious, even deadly, complications from COVID-19. For the elderly and patients with chronic conditions, telemedicine combined with technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), wearables and voice-activated services, powered by 5G, allows for remote patient monitoring and inclusion of patient’s family and caregivers in communications with the doctor and in treatment decisions.


The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) is a healthcare-specific subset of the Internet of Things (IoT). This massive network is poised to include billions of low-bit rate and low-energy connected health monitoring devices, remote sensors, and clinical wearables, with 5G providing a backbone infrastructure for IoT. Doctors already rely on these devices to collect and electronically transmit their patients’ data. The data is received in real time, allowing healthcare providers to efficiently analyse it, derive insights, and administer or adjust treatments. On the diagnostics and prevention side, this data will also allow doctors to increase the accuracy of their diagnoses and therefore effectiveness of treatments.


The COVID-19 / Coronavirus Pandemic will have a significant positive and lasting impact on Telehealth market expansion.


The annual global IoT revenue in healthcare is expected to surpass $27 Billion by the year 2025. And IHS Markit predicts that 5G will enable more than $1 Trillion in products and services for the global health care sector. The global Telemedicine market size was valued at $45 Billion in 2019 and is expected to grow 19.3% from 2020 to 2026 to reach $175 Billion by 2026 (Global Market Insights, April 2020). North America is expected to maintain the largest share of the global market.


To explore the various enabling technologies for telemedicine, John Lynn invited Evan and I to guest host the #HITsm Twitter Chat on Friday May 8, 2020.



On the chat, we discussed the following topics:


T1: What are the most important technologies to enable Telemedicine?


T2: What is the role/responsibility of the public and private sectors in enabling Telehealth and increasing its adoption?


T3: How do IoT, AI and cloud technologies enable a complete remote health care experience?


T4: How is #5G transforming healthcare beyond “just” Telemedicine?


T5: How can Telemedicine help First Responders to improve triage and deliver better care?


BONUS: Is there a role for AR and VR in Telemedicine?



The conversation around these topics was amazing! The 140+ participants across 1,700+ tweets generated 81.6+ Million impressions.



Here are some of the notable responses to the Twitter Chat questions.


T1: What are the most important technologies to enable Telemedicine?


Responses are still being added to this blog.

T2: What is the role/responsibility of the public and private sectors in enabling Telehealth and increasing its adoption?


Responses are still being added to this blog.


T3: How do IoT, AI and cloud technologies enable a complete remote health care experience?


Responses are still being added to this blog.

Evan Kirstel @evankirstel

T3: #CLOUD! It’s a myth that #healthcare #data stored in the #cloud is "less secure" than onsite data. Modern cloud environments have all the necessary technology & #security protocols in place to protect sensitive #medical information. #HITsm


T4: How is #5G transforming healthcare beyond “just” Telemedicine?

Responses are still being added to this blog.


T5: How can Telemedicine help First Responders to improve triage and deliver better care?


Responses are still being added to this blog.


BONUS: Is there a role for AR and VR in Telemedicine?


Responses are still being added to this blog.


Tripp Braden @TrippBraden

Bonus We use AR/ VR for first responders training. At first field commanders not very comfortable with it. Over time and proven success its hard to argue with the improved results




https://twitter.com/drschweig/status/1258800490864799744












https://twitter.com/evankirstel/status/1258804080031514625







You can see further insights from this discussion in the Twitter Chat transcript.






https://twitter.com/BFMack/status/1258806724389109762

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