Access and Feeds

Medical Devices: IoT for Healthcare Devices

By Dick Weisinger

The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) refers to the interconnection of medical devices, software applications, health systems and services over the internet.

The IoMT market is huge. Allied Market Research estimates that the IoT healthcare market will reach $136.8 billion by 2021. 50 million medical devices will be used by patients by 2022.

Lalit Panda, business advisor, said that “The value of medical IoT is being augmented because of the symbiotic growth of machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI). In processing large amounts of continuously streaming information from sensor assisted medical devices, data analytics and ML, provide actionable conclusions quicker aiding the therapeutic process.”.

But in order for IoMT to advance, there are issues, particularly related to cybersecurity that must be addressed. The following three hurdles to overcome:

  • Many medical devices still use very old and outdated operating systems that were never intended to go online and have weak or no cybersecurity protection.
  • Hospital networks are net segmented and once an attacker gains access to the system, all machines and applications are within reach.
  • When equipment or software vulnerabilities are identified, the quipment is not updated or replaced and the software is not patched.

Bernard Marr, futurist, writes that “in order for the IoMT things to truly be transformative, healthcare organizations will need to figure out how to turn all the data it collects into insights that can inform action. While the momentum of this transformation is increasing, it will require hospital administrators, manufacturers and vendors to work together to drive healthcare’s cultural metamorphosis.”

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