What is a smart hospital?

By Kayleigh Shooter
Healthcare Global examines what is meant by "smart hospital" and what it brings to the industry...

 Simply put, smart hospitals are hospitals which optimize, redesign and/or build new clinical processes, management systems and maybe even infrastructure, all enabled by underlying digitized networking infrastructure of interconnected assets, to provide a valuable service or insight which was not possible or available earlier, to achieve better patient care, experience and operational efficiency. Smart hospitals contain three important layers – data, insight and access. s entities, which improves the quality of care. 

As the population grows, the demand for healthcare services is rapidly increasing especially in the current COVID-19 crisis. On top of this surging demand, patients also have ever-increasing expectations about the quality of the healthcare treatments they undergo and the services they are provided with. In addition to all of this, laws and regulations are becoming more and more strict and complex. By 2030, the world will be home to more than 8.5 billion people, so pressures on the healthcare system will only increase as time goes on. These, therefore, contribute to constantly rising costs, and this is where a smart hospital comes in, to reduce these costs. 

Smart hospitals maximize productivity, provide better patient satisfaction and flexibility, thanks to the digital transformation of the healthcare industry. Today's world is rapidly evolving but our hospital infrastructure is often left to play catch up, there are countless hospitals that are over 100 years old and are still in operation, they have very limited possibilities for advancement yet they are having to deal with the increased demand and they can not do this with the infrastructure and technology that they currently have.

Smart hospitals are able to play a major role in the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the technology can aid in social distancing between infected patients and non-infected patients to help curb the growth and spread. The pandemic has placed the healthcare industry under immense pressure, any technology that presents a solution is welcome. Smart hospitals could become critical to recovery. 

Do you think smart hospitals are the way forward for the industry? Tweet us at @HealthcareDig and let us know. 

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