Biggest Challenges In Remote Patient Monitoring And The Best Solutions
Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) is a new and advancing field. It has the possibility of revolutionizing the industry. Through RPM, medical professionals can track and monitor patients’ vital signs and health metrics around the clock and act upon them faster.
However, there are a few challenges and problems with remote patient monitoring. These include security issues, data accuracy, and even patient compliance.
Despite the possible problems in RPM, it can improve patient outcomes and reduce costs. This increases the efficiency of the healthcare system. So, sit back as we dive into the challenges and manage their solutions.
Remote Patient Monitoring Security
RPM relies on transmitting sensitive medical data over the internet. Thus, security is a significant concern. It’s vulnerable to cyber attacks, data breaches, and various threats. These threats can compromise patients’ integrity, availability, and confidentiality. This can lead to grave consequences for both patients and healthcare providers.
It’s necessary to implement robust security measures to address these issues. RPM providers can do this through ECC (elliptic curve cryptography). It’s a security schema that divides the process into three steps.
- Identification of data skin and consumers.
- Registration to create a secret channel after identification.
- Lastly, verifying the communication between skin and the consumer.
Data Accuracy in RPM
Another critical concern is data accuracy. RPM relies on the transmission of medical data with the help of wearables and sensors. This data must be accurate and reliable. Inaccurate data can result in faulty diagnoses and treatment decisions. This can cause significant harm to patients.
Many factors can affect the accuracy of data from these RPM systems. One issue is the quality of the sensors used. Additionally, if the sensors aren’t calibrated correctly, they may result in inaccurate readings. It’s essential to ensure that these sensors are accurate to minimize the risks of incorrect data.
The sensors might be the highest quality, but patient compliance is the most important. There is a challenge in altering the mind of patients, especially the elderly. Most of them are accustomed to face-to-face visits. They’re conditioned to associate high-quality healthcare with being near a nurse or a doctor.
Real-time Data Access in RPM
Real-time access to data is the next important feature of RPM. Healthcare professionals can monitor patient data in real time. It’s helpful in emergencies, as the doctors can quickly assess the situation of patients and take quick action.
However, there are a few challenges to real-time data access. The biggest one is the need for constant connectivity. The data won’t be transmitted if the sensors aren’t connected over the internet. There is also the issue of a baseline bandwidth necessary for these devices to work.
The data must travel over the network through multiple data centers and the RPM platform network. If any hops are interrupted, it could result in delayed data and possibly loss along the way.
RPM can achieve this connectivity through WBAN. The activities of constantly transmitting data consume energy. The protocols used in WBAN, such as Bluetooth and Zigbee, consume low power. Research is still ongoing to improve these protocols and even develop new ones.
The next issue that RPM could face is system integration. This wouldn’t be a big issue if the healthcare providers all used the same systems on a single network. That’s not the case, though.
Many problems arise in this sector. First are the technical challenges. An example can be taken in the UK, where the healthcare sector still uses outdated software stacks. All the systems must be compatible to ensure that the data transmitted is accurate and secure.
Interoperability is another issue, as health data is usually large and heterogeneous. There are two sides to interoperability in RPM programs, sensors, and data.
Technical integration aside, integration into the social system is another problem. It can be challenging to ensure patients use the monitoring system as intended. The next is reimbursement, and such a new technology might not be included in insurance plans.
Once a remote monitoring platform is introduced, this problem can be nullified. Until then, RPM needs to be managed carefully to avoid any issues. The whole system needs to be changed bit by bit to accommodate this technology, but it could be a game-changer once it is.
The Cost of RPM
Perhaps the biggest problem RPM can face is the cost to roll it out in the healthcare industry.
These include per-unit costs, licensing costs, and software costs. The technical staff that manages and maintains the system is also a huge cost.
Another budget issue providers must address is the cost of training the staff to use the new technology. Organizations usually overlook this important fact when introducing new software into the mix.
With the advent of RPM, we have the prospect of taking a step ahead in the healthcare industry. If these RPM problems are addressed, we will see a change in the entire outlook of the medical industry.
If you want to obtain the benefits of RPM, don’t miss out on SmartClinix! Take advantage of the low RPM costs and never look back! You can avail of hassle-free services with amazing discounts!
Dr. Josh is a physician who's helping spread the knowledge about Telehealth and its advantages. At SmartClinix, he's providing his expertise and knowledge in the form of engaging articles on various health & tech related topics.
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