Covid-19 Pandemic Boosts mHealth Market
The COVID – 19 viruses have spread around the world like wildfire, and in the race of curbing it, various mobile health technologies have developed in the past few months. The pandemic has created positive turbulence in the mHealth market with new innovative products being introduced. A task force was recently assembled so that the usefulness of these technologies could be examined to monitor and mitigate the pandemic's effects.
It is a grave necessity in current times for such mobile health technologies that can monitor a person’s vitals and predict symptom escalation so that proper healthcare can reach them on time. The research done on the technology was under three categories – wearable sensors, digital contact tracing technology, and electronic patient – recorded outcome screening system. The task force reviewed how these technologies could be used in various settings and strategies that could be developed with their help in response to the pandemic.
Under the category of Wearable sensors, the researchers identified those sensor technologies that could successfully detect worsening symptoms in patients who are positive with COVID – 19 virus and self–quarantining. It has been found that patients with mild symptoms may experience a sudden rise in the severity of their symptoms and certain conditions require immediate hospitalization. In such cases, it is essential to monitor these patients with wearable sensors so that the changes in their vitals could be closely monitored, in addition to body temperature, heart rate, oxygen saturation, etc. This type of technology may also help health professionals in monitoring patients once they go back home.
As part of their study, researchers also undertook the option of using wearable sensors for monitoring the health of front-line clinical workers. This might provide the ability to detect early signs of an outbreak in the hospital or healthcare settings. For this, they reviewed twenty eight commercially available sensors that could be used for the purpose. They evaluated them and compiled a list of twelve examples of technologies that could be used to monitor patients as well as front-line workers.
Researchers also evaluated the emerging technologies which have not yet been brought out in the market or those which have not been brought to the health sector hitherto. They focused on technologies that enabled contactless sensing, text-based mental health sensing, robotic technologies, and vocal biomarkers. They identified several of these technologies which could help in monitoring the virus.
These kinds of research are essential as mobile health technologies help medical experts understand how the virus works and how it can be stopped, leading to an increase in the number of people who get the proper care.
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