End to End Telecom for Healthcare Architecture: A Cable Industry Perspective (2021)

By Dr. Sudheer Dharanikota, Duke Tech Solutions Inc.; Clarke Stevens, Shaw Communications

The COVID-19 pandemic forced people to consider new ways to manage healthcare and wellness care. One of the first places people turned was to online solutions. Video conferencing provided a way for physicians and other healthcare workers to provide remote care for patients even though opportunities for meeting in-person were limited. This provided a basic form of Telehealth. Many people had to manage their personal health and wellness conditions while primarily remaining at home. Again, network connectivity became essential for these rudimentary Aging in Place (AIP) use cases. While people relied on networking services, most did not really take advantage of the true possibilities of networked services.

There are numerous networked sensors available that can measure many important parameters. There are smart home devices that can automate common tasks. More importantly, networks of family, friends and caregivers can be provided with information and contacted under common management. AIP and Telehealth has not nearly met its potential. This is an opportunity for cable operators. While there are piece parts that are available from specialists for smart home components, health management and communication, nobody has yet really integrated these parts into a cohesive service. Cable operators provide networking services to the home, work with existing familiar interfaces (like television) and aggregate services for consumers as core competencies. Therefore, cable operators are well-positioned to work with various partners to provide complete integrated AIP and Telehealth packages. This can increase convenience, reduce costs and improve care for all stakeholders in the healthcare value chain.

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