ER overcrowding spurs growth of remote monitoring market

Emergency room diversion and capacity limitations are driving the market for wireless and other advanced patient monitoring systems, making it one the fastest-growing segments of medical devices in terms of revenue, according to a new report by market research firm Kalorama Information.

The U.S. market for remote monitoring system sales more than doubled, from 2007 ($3.9 billion) to 2011 ($8.9 billion). Some of these systems include advanced features, such as new peripherals; real-time audio and video for "face-to-face" interaction between clinicians and patients; wireless communication; web-based access to patient records; and systems that transfer data to EMRs, according to the report's authors.

Interestingly, Lexington, Mass.-based WinterGreen Research's predicted figures--revealed in a report in May and reiterated identically by British research firm Companies & Markets in June--were much lower, but predicted a higher rate of growth. The reports forecasted that the global market will more than triple from $736 million in 2011 to $2.5 billion by 2018.

Mobile and remote health are two of five healthcare technologies that will benefit the most from the Supreme Court's ruling on healthcare reform, according to healthcare consultant David Scher, M.D.. More insured patients means more patients with chronic diseases who will seek care, much of which likely will take place at home, he said.

To learn more:
- read the Kalorama announcement

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