Remote Patient Monitoring: Opportunities and Challenges

The pandemic has propelled Remote Patient Monitoring, an aspect of telemedicine, to the forefront of healthcare. Even though we are just at the beginning of the RPM, there is vast potential for its widespread use across the health system in many ways.

RPM is about making available at-home measurement devices, wearable sensors, and symptom trackers to enable clinicians to monitor their patient’s vital parameters for making a well-informed assessment of their health and providing treatment recommendations. Its concerted application can change the healthcare system forever.

Filling The Gap in Effective Patient Care

Remote Patient Monitoring solutions help cost-effective care and reduce the chances of hospitalization. The efficiency of the providers is also going up with new and improved technology. Caregivers are now leveraging mobile-enabled RPM for communicating patient data and providing instant clinical and financial value.

These interventions can be delivered to different kinds of patient profiles throughout their journey from diagnosis to self-care either as one-off solutions or as a comprehensive offering.

An Expanding Market

According to a latest survey the RPM market had touched $56.3 billion in 2022 and is expected to scale $175.2. billion by 2027 growing at a CAGR of 26%. There is great potential for RPM services to expand in the years to come as patients overcome the hesitancy in adopting new technologies.

New Tech Provides Expansion Opportunity

Rapid strides in digital tech are making remote patient monitoring services a possibility at a scale. As per the Mckinsey and Co report, as many as one in five healthcare leaders said that their practice offers remote patient monitoring. This enables providers to keep up to date with the patient’s conditions and make interventions that cut down visits to the hospital, reduce the rate of re-admissions, and even save the lives of monitored patients.

Effective In Epidemic Control

Its utility in combating infectious diseases and epidemics is high considering it demands patient isolation to control the spread of infection. With its rising popularity and the willingness of patients to share data, there is a significant opportunity for research and data monetization in the future.

Challenges In Wider RPM Adoption

There are, however, certain challenges the new technology must overcome before it fully becomes mainstream.

Digital Devices Falling Short

The current wearable remote devices have their limitation in recording authentically the clinical level data. The practitioners still prefer to rely on their devices for real patient data such as blood pressure.  A survey points out that health caregivers find the entire digital tech paraphernalia overwhelming and cumbersome. Healthcare BPO services can play a role in making the process seamless for hospitals and patients.

Data Accuracy and Security

There may have been great progress in digital technologies, but the entire debate over the efficacy of data-collecting devices puts a question mark on data accuracy and its security. Patients are hesitant to share their periodic data on the RPM platforms for fear that it will be leaked and misused.

Interoperability A Challenge

The entire medical system operates through complex layers involving practitioners, patients, paramedics, diagnostics, and even insurance providers, making interoperability a significant determinant of effective health delivery systems. The data, thus, generated must make sense to each of the stakeholders and be transferred in a way that enhances patient care. Efficient interoperability is still a work in progress.

The Conclusion

In the coming years, RPM will see a steady path of growth with the rising popularity of healthcare devices and the patients’ increasing confidence in the efficacy of the devices to record and communicate their health parameters accurately. With the progress in machine learning and data analytics, we shall soon be in a zone where machines will take over the mundane tasks of practitioners, giving them ample time to engage in more rewarding pursuits.