Take a look at medical device integration and possibilities that it can get your hospital or practice. Every clinic or medical practice uses lots of connected medical devices that produce and collect tons of patient information and health records. To reduce manual work and issues due to the human factor, pay attention to the software used to integrate all of them into one convenient system.
- What are the benefits of medical device integration
- The difficulties of medical devices integration
- Examples of medical devices integration
- Best way to develop a medical device integration software
Electronic medical device manufacturers are taking a solid place in the engineering market and technologies are taking more space in the modern medical workflow. This growing tendency can be observed in such examples as the use of virtual reality applications as a method for treating patients and implementation of the electronic medical records (EMR) in hospitals and healthcare organizations.
Looking closer at this example, EMR software is seen as a big step in the future of the medical documentation system. However, just yet EMR is only gaining its popularity in the medical sphere and there are lots of issues to be covered and explained to the general public and medical specialists in particular.
One of the questions that need to be discussed is how can an EMR system be implemented into already existing hospital infrastructure? How will hospitals benefit from it? How to integrate medical devices with EMR? The last issue should be highlighted and explained in the first place, since medical device integration with the hospital network is the hardest but the most valuable element in medical technology implementation.
What are the benefits of medical device integration
Let us have a closer look at the advantages of having medical devices integration software in the hospital. So, here are the top four reasons to consider implementing such medical software into the hospital’s work.
- Integrated workflow. With medical device integration, the hospital receives an efficient, easy, and understandable workflow. All the sections of the hospital are connected, and due to the web-based system, they can be easily controlled.
- One more contribution, to ease the daily routine of the medical staff, is eliminating the manual work with health records and clinical data. As it was mentioned above, now there is no need for collecting the data manually, since the integrated medical equipment is able to collect and analyze the data automatically. So, as a result, the medical personnel will receive clear and processed information, probably even collected and summed up from more than one device at a time. With the integrated medical data, the process goes way faster increasing its quality and eliminating all the possible errors due to human factors.
- Remote control. Now doctors can watch over the health status of each patient even if they aren’t physically at the hospital. And what is more, patients are also able to check the information about their health (doctor's conclusions, analysis results, drug prescriptions) without actually going to the hospital. It can be possible due to the cloud-based online access to the information and the personal cabinet.
- Web-based storage. The received data from all the medical devices now will be filtered, stored, and secured online. This means that there is no more struggle with searching for the required patient's data through all the devices and the system will collect everything automatically and send the data directly to the place of storage. In addition, by using such a system data will remain crack-proof.
The difficulties of medical device integration
Medical device integration with EMR systems is a daunting and complex process that requires work at various levels, from developing software to building a network of bridges and gateways for the medical devices and the data collecting devices. This last issue is still happening since many medical devices might have different specs they were given by the manufacturer. So there is no “single size” that will fit all the existing devices.
Moreover, there is no single electronic health record system as such. Most commonly various electronic health record solutions have different functions, interfaces, and operational systems. Therefore, EMR integration solutions should be flexible and match various types of medical device networks as well as be HIPAA compliant.
So as we see, it’s not only the problem of integration. It is a hard procedure for two reasons. First, it is the fact that medical device connectivity becomes a complex process since there is no "one model” solution for establishing connections among all medical devices. And second, the local databases of the hospitals also vary from one place to another. However, let's take a closer look at medical device integration services.
Examples of medical device integration
Medical device integration can make the work of the entire medical practice much faster and even safer. By connecting devices, which are important for vital health data monitoring, medical personnel from healthcare providers is receiving the full picture of the patient’s health status without the need to be present in front of the monitors and checking the information through a bunch of devices, like vital signs monitor, ventilation pumps, telemedicine solutions, etc.
With the software integration, it is possible to receive an entire patient records report with not just collected but analyzed data from all the monitors and devices. It is beneficial in a matter of time, and also provides common medical devices with modern functions.
For instance, usually, all the information that was obtained by the medical devices, for example, such as EKG machines or vital signs monitors, was “locked” inside the device. It slowed all the processes down making simple things complicated. In such a way all the documentation was done manually, then transformed into full reports, including all the indexes, and only after that it was possible to have a full picture of the patients’ data.
However, a patient care device integration inside the hospital network would allow the staff to skip the routine and useless procedures and replace them with the automatized connectivity of the devices. It not only allows us to collect all the data from the machines but also might work as alarm triggers if anything goes wrong with the patient’s records to guarantee patient safety. For example, there can be alarms for tracking the heart rate of the patient.
Other examples of medical device integration can include:
- Vital signs monitors
- Ventilators and infusion pumps
- Physiologic monitor
- Fetal monitor
- Cardiac output monitor
- Interactive infusion pump
- Infant incubator
Also, here is an interesting bonus for the implementation of the EMR system. By having medical device connectivity you can integrate with not only the medical devices but also work on connecting the fax machines and scanners with the inner system. So it will be much easier and faster to get the patient information on paper when the one needs it.
Best way to develop a medical device integration software
It will be better to go with a third party that specializes in bringing the services you need. The top criteria on how to choose the team who are going to work on your project is to analyze the credibility of the outsourcing company you want to pick and to compare its portfolio and prices to others. To develop custom software for medical devices integration, developers need a specific set of tools, due to the complexity of the development.
So, by picking the team which already has some experience in this sphere you have a win-win situation. You don’t overpay for the time which is required for getting used to the new tools and you get your product faster since the developers are already experienced in custom medical software development.
For those who are about to start their startup and who are looking for a web development company, we are ready to offer you our services. We have an experienced team of professional developers on board who is always glad to help and to invest their knowledge into a new project. So if you want to get more information about the topic or medical device software development in general, you are welcome to contact us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.