Just imagine you are a medical professional and have a patient with a heart condition. The individual is at present at a friend’s residence and is experiencing issues. Your Android mobile phone notifies you of the potential issue. You open up the alert and are able to see in real-time your patient’s heart rate, blood pressure, blood oxygen levels along with vital statistics that will help you determine next steps. You determine that your patient is in distress and call for an ambulance with the touch of a button and telephone your patient. Your patient’s location is also known as a result of GPS inside their smartphone.
This example is rapidly becoming a reality with a recent improvement in technology: Bluetooth Health Data Profile (HDP). Bluetooth HDP is a new layer on top of the Bluetooth protocol stack that stipulates a standard set of instructions for medical related devices. The Bluetooth HDP instrument would safely connect and send out data to a smartphone or other receivers. The results can then be transmitted to a primary health management software package used by the physicians, nursing staff, homecare providers, etc.
The truth is one can find thousands of medical gadgets that are currently Bluetooth enabled. Nevertheless, until now there has not been a standard set of instructions to exchange data. This is the reason why each device must have its own proprietary application to communicate with. Bluetooth HDP devices will be able to communicate with applications created to support the new standard. One significant perk to consumers is the power to choose a heart monitor from one vendor and a blood oxygen meter from yet another. Both of these devices may now communicate with your health care providers selected health management system. This is great for the consumer since it gives us choices and is not going to lock us into a single vendor’s system. We are also able to choose the best of breed hardware and software in addition to purchase at competitive prices.
Why do we need a standard set of instructions? What if the web did not use a standard set of protocols and technology to show webpages? This would mean you would require a particular browser to view each website. One web browser, like Firefox, may or may not function with that one website. Because of these standards you can use a single browser to surf the web.
Medical device companies and health management software designers will be the largest users of this technology. Due to the fact we have a growing aging population, healthcare companies need to identify better approaches to provide quality care to their consumers and scale with the increasing number of cases. However, there are many others that can also reap the benefits of this technology. For example, aerobic equipment manufactures could possibly use Bluetooth HDP to collect data from a heart monitor worn by the consumer and send it to the home treadmill they are running on. The speed of the cardio equipment could be accelerated or diminished based on data received from the heart monitor and according to the workout type. The heart monitor can be used on any cardio equipment at any other gym as long as it is a Bluetooth HDP enabled piece of equipment.