Introduction: New cloud-based services enable delivery of high quality care whether in the field or in a well-equipped city-centre hospital. Health workers can use a range of mobile devices, to suit the situation and enable flexibility. In this new ICT-enabled healthcare it is possible to reach high levels of operating efficiency without sacrificing standards of care and the experience of service users (patients). However, use of cloud services assumes that devices will have internet access where and when they are used. This degree of connectivity cannot unfortunately be taken for granted across much of Scotland's landmass. Delivering connectivity suitable for mobile devices is not trivial in remote rural areas, however new technologies and approaches are bringing down the costs.
Objectives: This workshop will consider:
Advanced services that can be delivered where connectivity allows, and the positive impact they can bring to remote communities - including remote monitoring and telecare
Connectivity challenges faced in remote areas and the factors contributing to the issue
Ad-hoc requirements (e.g. for a summer tourist festival or emergency incident)
Emerging connectivity technologies, showing how a connectivity strategy could be evolved to meet remote requirements
Examples of remote areas (including international examples) where emerging technologies enable a revolution in service delivery
Conclusions: Connectivity is a vital component to allow innovative solutions to be considered in the rural environment. This workshop will explore ways in which rural connectivity can be delivered effectively, and consider some of the benefits of connected healthcare.
This abstract was presented at the Innovative Solutions in Remote Healthcare - 'Rethinking Remote' conference, 23-24 May 2016, Inverness, Scotland.