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  • 5G
  • 4 Min Read

5G Impact on Healthcare

Saurav Jha

Saurav Jha

Also, In the previous part of the blog series, I analyzed 5G impact on manufacturing industry. Lets analyze 5G impact on Healthcare industry today.

According to Fortune.com,

The wireless industry is spending tens of billions of dollars to upgrade its current 4G LTE networks to 5G, which offers connection speeds 10 to 100 times as fast and enables new applications like mobile high-resolution virtual reality.

But 2020 has been a difficult year for 5G, as unfounded health fears have stalled the network upgrades necessary to reach faster speeds in some cities, while the corona virus pandemic has slowed sales of 5G-compatible phones.

Despite many unfounded health fears and baseless claims, 5G is all set to transform the healthcare industry in the post-pandemic world. Many health experts have highlighted how 5G will help countries to prevent the spread of corona virus by enabling people to maintain physical and social distancing.

The ultra-fast speed and ultra-low latency delivered by the fifth-generation wireless networks will enable healthcare providers to operate efficiently and seamlessly in a distributed environment. Also, new use cases of 5G will transform the healthcare industry in several ways. 

5G Impact on Healthcare: 7 Ways 5G Will Impact and Transform Healthcare in the Post-Pandemic World

Seamless Clinical Collaboration

In addition to speeding the wireless connectivity, 5G emphasizes enabling massive machine-type communication (MTC). MTC will make a large number of devices to communicate and interact with each other seamlessly over the internet. Hospitals and clinics can use MTC to collect real-time patient data continuously.

Also, 5G will facilitate the sharing of high-resolution images like MRI scans instantly by reducing latency to one millisecond. The MTC will promote seamless collaboration by making real-time patient data accessible to different hospitals and facilities across networks.

Virtual Healthcare Delivery

The corona virus pandemic has made it essential for patients to switch to remote care and home care. Most patients these days explore ways to get healthcare effectively without visiting a clinic or hospital in person. 5G will facilitate real-time and seamless communication between patients and doctors by maximizing speed and minimizing latency.

5G network will enable patients to transfer real-time health information to physicians instantly. Likewise, reliable wireless networks will help physicians to deliver healthcare flawlessly over voice calls and video chats without meeting the patient in person.

Advanced Robotic Tele-surgery

The 4G LTE networks deliver 20 seconds to 30 seconds latency. The latency is not adequate to facilitate advanced robotic tele-surgery. But 5G will facilitate advanced tele-surgery or robotic surgery by promoting ultra-reliable low latency communication. Reliable networks and ultra-low latency will facilitate seamless interaction between doctors and robots.

The doctors can control the surgical robots seamlessly and flawlessly from a remote location. Also, surgical robots can perform a variety of surgeries in a fully-automated clinical setup. Several hospitals and clinics have already performed robotic tele-surgery successfully on both animals and humans.

AI-Driven Diagnosis

The new-generation medical diagnosis solutions leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to identify the rare objects in blood, urine, and other body fluids accurately. Also, many health practitioners use AI to perform a predictive diagnosis to identify health problems before patients experiences the symptoms. AI cannot diagnose health conditions accurately without analyzing accurate and updated patient data.

As noted earlier, 5G will enable clinical collaboration by facilitating the collection and sharing of real-time data. The patients can share real-time health data continuously through wearable devices and internet-connected devices. 5G will enable hospitals and clinics to adopt AI-driven predictive diagnosis by improving wireless network speed and reliability.

Alleviate Chronic Pain Using AR and VR

According to ZDNet.com,

Widespread deployment of 5G mobile networks could accelerate the adoption of augmented and virtual reality, although wider availability is not the only requirement for VR and AR to thrive on 5G.” 

Leading tech companies have already started testing the effectiveness of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in reducing chronic pain and anxiety.

They are planning to launch campaigns that will enable healthcare providers to manage chronic pain and anxiety by delivering alternative therapies and minimally-invasive treatments. The 5G-powered AR and VR devices will engage and distract the terminally ill patients by delivering targeted content. The targeted content will boost the patient’s comfort level through AR and VR experience.

Next-Generation Medical Gadgets for Patients

Innovative companies are working on the next-generation medical gadgets that will enable patients to monitor, track, and assess health on their own. The sensors embedded in these gadgets will help patients to access a variety of real-time health information on demand.

Also, the sensors will share real-time information with the healthcare providers automatically over wireless networks. The demand for and adoption of the medical sensor will be driven by the massive deployment of 5G networks. Medical sensors will help clinics and hospitals to set up the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) in the near future.

Combat Loneliness and Depression

According to a survey conducted by the health insurer Cigna,

Loneliness has the same impact on mortality as smoking 15 cigarettes a day, making it even more dangerous than obesity.

Despite social media and instant messaging apps, both aged people and millennials these days feel lonely and isolated. The healthcare providers have to focus on combating loneliness and depression, along with delivering personalized healthcare services, in post-pandemic world.

Many researchers believe that 5G has the potential to become an effective solution for combating loneliness and mental isolation by forming a community of people feeling lonely and isolated. The lonely people can connect and interact with others living in a similar environment using an Internet of Things (IoT) device. Also, the psychologists can recommend lonely patients to stay connected with the community simply by installing the easy-to-use IoT device in their accommodations.

5G Impact on healthcare will be more prominent when the deployment of 5G networks will start happening. 5G technology has the potential to prevent the spread of corona virus by enabling social and physical distancing. Also, the new and innovative use cases of 5G in healthcare will enable physicians to treat patients and patients to avail of healthcare services on demand. Hence, the mass-scale implementation of 5G networks will transform the healthcare industry completely in the post-pandemic world.

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