How can smart cities become smart & healthy cities?

Smart cities hold the promise to potentially make urban areas not just more efficient and secure, but also more healthy.

The ultimate goal of smart cities is to improve urban infrastructure while reducing costs, to foster innovation in various sectors and to enhance the quality of life of their citizens. This includes smart healthcare. 

The increase in technology and data that will come with smart cities represents a huge opportunity for governments to proactively manage citizens’ health and to change the way healthcare is delivered. Integrating stakeholders through a robust technology based smart healthcare backbone, enables the provision of affordable, accessible and efficient quality care to all when they need it, where they need it.

Some of the healthcare solutions that can make smart cites truly healthy and smart are telehealth, mHealth apps, Electronic Health Records (EHR), Hospital Management Information system (HMIS) and IoT based healthcare technologies.  However, the need of the hour is to deliver these sophisticated solutions through an integrated platform that can connect all stakeholders in the care continuum including citizens, doctors, pharmacies, diagnostic labs and municipal authorities. 

Integrated healthcare solutions can be of great benefit when implemented on a large scale in smart cities. A holistic view of cities’ health data like disease profiles, disease patterns and trends, seasonal disease cycles etc. are available to the Government, through which the authorities can plan their health care initiatives, programs and allocate funding. An integrated health management roadmap is critical in tying the various pieces together into a nationwide health technology and information backbone. This will decrease unit cost, standardize the basics, and set Indian healthcare on a slower but comprehensive transformation journey. A holistic population health solution, leveraging the information backbone with innovative analytics, can also form the basis for optimal deployment of meagre resources for maximum impact.

The Optum IHMS solution is a comprehensive & integrated patient-centric framework that integrates such technologies and transformative components to benefit citizens, health care professionals, and decision and policy makers. These components help in redefining the doctor and patient experience and personalization of care plans, and assist with increasingly sophisticated triage and diagnosis.  

With the healthcare industry changing at a fast pace, this IHMS solution too will evolve continuously to incorporate new strategies, directions and innovations. Such ongoing innovation and investments in developing a technology based IHMS will help the citizens of smart cities in leading healthier and happier lives.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house