TOP
STORIES
 1 of 5
Safety Technology Standards for Schools Outlined at ISC West
Partner Alliance for Safer Schools detailed four tiers of product agnostic life safety strategies to help K-12 districts protect against scourge of school shootings.
 2 of 5
What Obamacare Means For Your Small Business
Learn how to find low insurance prices, take advantage of tax credits and employ private health insurance within your business.
 3 of 5
Forecasts Mixed for Industry’s Economic Future
GDP growth remains slow, but there’s some level of optimism that things are (slowly) continuing to rebound. But how long will the recovery last? It all depends who you ask.
 4 of 5
#FF: Cameras That ID’d Boston Marathon Bombers Almost Turned Off
In light of recent updates in the Dzhokhar Tsarnaev trial, get another look at the technology that helped the FBI identify the suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing of April 2013.
 5 of 5
Wrigley Field Debacle a Lesson to Integrators
Open communication and working with client and other unions generally helps installers put together better projects.
Technology’s Role in Reducing Healthcare Costs
Medical technology is a huge growth sector that will consume vast amounts of A/V and IT integration.

Article


October 27, 2011 By Dan Daley

During 2010, healthcare costs in the U.S. were estimated to be about 16 percent of the country’s $14.8 trillion GDP, more than double what healthcare as a percentage of GDP was in 1970.

What to do about the cost of healthcare is a hot-button issue in politics, but integrators can be sure of one thing: The answer is inevitably going to have to rely to a significant extent on A/V systems technology for solutions.

Already, HD video conferencing systems are being used for doctor-patient consultations, for remote diagnosis, for medical training and other applications. Digital signage is being used to link local and regional medical centers, as are data server/storage systems that can maintain voluminous amounts of patient data and still be compliant with the mandates of the HIPAA Act to assure patient confidentiality and data security.

New configurations of healthcare delivery, such as Accountable Care Organizations (ACO), that seek to improve the quality of care while simultaneously reducing costs through coordination and collaboration among providers will rely heavily on these kinds of technologies for successful implementation.

According to the American Hospital Association, the costs associated with developing these capabilities, including A/V and IT systems, range from $5.3 to $12 million per facility and are expected to increase.

John Laughlin, president of Conference Technologies, says that changes in medical practices are also driving A/V in those spaces.

“We see a trend that with the aid of nurse practitioners, doctors have more of an opportunity to assist in multiple locations utilizing audio-visual technology,” he says. “High-definition video conferencing along with increased data feedback options from medical equipment are giving medical professionals an entirely new set of tools to use. This allows doctors real-time feedback with very sharp and clear images that standard definition never allowed. Many times it’s referred to as the spoke and hub: one doctor supports, for instance, five offices, with nurse practitioners located in every office.”

Rich Mullen, a CTS at Vistacom, is the de facto health care systems specialist at an integrator that specializes in medical systems environments. “Our first inroads into the healthcare industry began 20 years ago with basic nurse call systems,” Mullen recalls. “But in the 1990s we saw many healthcare institutions migrating quickly to remote diagnostics and telemedicine, specifically with orthopedic and neurological departments.

“The hot trend now is in early stroke detection using remote diagnostics. A lot of hospitals are trying to implement as much remote diagnostics as possible. The problem is, though, they’re looking at the end nodes on the system rather than starting with the network, the information infrastructure to handle all these asset management and data transmissions. That’s where we saw our opportunity to really create custom solutions around medical systems clients.”

Mullen cites Lehigh Valley Hospital in Allentown, Pa., as an example of a hospital that figured out that it had to put the network horse before the cart - literally, as the hospital prepared to deploy wireless Computer On Wheels (COW) carts that bring diagnosis and treatment options to the bedside.

About the author
Veteran reporter Dan Daley is based in New York City and Nashville, Tenn.
View all posts by Dan Daley
Social Bookmark or Share This
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • Yahoo! Bookmarks
  • Google Bookmarks
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Reddit
  • Windows Live
  • LinkedIn
  • Evernote
  • E-mail


  • Latest
  • Blogs
  • Photos
  • Resources
Enter the 2015 Commercial Integrator BEST Awards

Commercial Integrator's BEST Awards program recognizes the most noteworthy products and solutions for an integration business. Entries are being accepted until May 15, with an early bird deadline of April 10.

2015 Integration Awards Looking for Stand-Out Commercial Installations
Peerless-AV Combats Fatigue, Muscle Aches, Eye Strain in the Office
Pakedge RE2 Router Addresses A/V, Automation Applications
FCC Chairman Wheeler Hints at Longterm Net Neutrality Plan at NAB
View more news
White Paper:
Zooming In on Eye-Opening Surveillance Technologies

Demand for video surveillance is poised to intensify with cloud services, Ultra HD, edge devices, wider dynamic ranges and superior compression.

White Paper: 8 Ways To Calm a CIO’s AV Anxiety
Webcast: Inside PASS Electronic Equipment Guidelines to Safer Schools
White Paper: 5 Steps to Cheaper, Simpler Huddle Spaces
White Paper: State of the Industry Report
White Paper: An Integrator or Audiophile’s Guide to Networked Audio
White Paper: LED Light Fixtures: No Electrician Required
White Paper: The Ultimate Guide to As-a-Service
View more papers or webcasts



Recent comments

Yes, the ACA is great for doctors.  My wife had cancer under our old policy.  It paid for virtually…

Posted by Jerry on 2015 04 20 · commented on
'What Obamacare Means For Your Small Business'.

Coverage and access are two ill defined terms.  For example, you could feel less covered because the…

Posted by Dr. Steven Eastaugh on 2015 04 20 · commented on
'What Obamacare Means For Your Small Business'.

One important point this article doesn’t discuss is coverage.  We’re paying significantly…

Posted by Jerry on 2015 04 20 · commented on
'What Obamacare Means For Your Small Business'.

Item 9 thoughts.

When streaming ANY video, you need to consider the venue, as some systems/solutions…

Posted by Dennis on 2015 04 08 · commented on
'10 Important Considerations for HDBaseT Deployments'.