2012: the advent of the smart healthcare era

SK Telecom
12 Dec 2011

Healthcare costs are rising sharply with the aging of the population, backed by the advancement of medical science and technology as well as the increase of chronic diseases that incur high management costs. As part of efforts to tackle the increasing deficit in health insurance financing, countries across the world are implementing medical policies that curb the increase in medical expenses and enhance quality of healthcare by improving cost efficiency of the medical industry through the use of ICT.

The medical industry is evolving towards the direction of so-called “P4” (Predictive, Preventive, Personalized, Participatory), giving more emphasis on disease prevention and management, which will in turn provide telecom companies with valuable opportunities to join the emerging market of integrated, smart healthcare.

Connectivity-based telemedicine

The sophistication of telecom technologies based on broadband networks will enable high resolution telepresence service between patients and doctors located far away from each other, while also facilitating smooth collaborative practice between doctors. Patients will be connected to healthcare professionals that they cannot easily see at nearby hospitals or clinics - including diet therapists, social workers, etc. - and constantly receive help and support from medical service providers.

Telemedicine service is designed to provide users with total care such as diagnosis/assessment using bio-signal measuring devices and medical treatment/control of diseases via an interactive video system, and the service will enable collaborative medical care and remote reading service based on the network between large-sized hospitals and small-and medium-sized clinics.

Cloud-based data transmission/management

Standardization of information-sharing among the parties concerned - including medical centers, pharmacies, public health centers and insurance companies - regarding the prescription and diagnosis of patients is becoming increasingly important. The development of cloud computing technology will contribute to enhancing the efficiency between entities and transparency of medical information by applying the cloud infrastructure to the exchange of massive, complicated medical information.

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