It is estimated that the widespread use of this type of technology can save the lives of thousands of people a year in Europe alone. Such as the life of this English teenager, saved by the automatic emergency call function (eCall) from his car to the 999 emergency services following a very violent impact that made the driver (i.e. the mother) unconscious.
eCallIn the blog we tell many of these happy ending stories made possible by eHealth. In addition, we try to explain in practical terms through examples what eHealth is for.The rest of this page analyzes in detail the areas, uses and benefits of eHealth, presenting some concrete examples of new
“life-enhancing” and life-saving technologies that represent only the tip of the iceberg, that is, they are just a taste of the innovations that this exciting new discipline promises to bring for years to come.
How was e-Health born?
The term e-Health was born shortly before 1999 in the marketing of certain technology companies (Intel, for example, makes use of it) by assonance with the term e-Commerce (ie electronic commerce) and other “e-terms” then very popular. The idea was to give a distinctive name to the idea of the convergence of the health system with the Internet.
The possibility for health tools to always (or almost always) be connected to the Internet has also led to the creation of the English term “Connected Health” (which in Italian could be translated as “health on the net” or “health on the net”), to characterize all those solutions that make connection to the network, and in general to the cloud, their main cornerstone.
E-Health, also called (and translated into digital health), is therefore the product of the technological revolution that took place before 2000 with the explosion of the Internet and later with the enormous spread of new devices. generation connected to it (collectively called the Internet of Things or Internet of Things, IoT, in English), such as:
Tabletsmartphonesmartwatchfitness trackerswearable sensors (called wearables) such as heart rate sensors, etc.in addition to Personal Computers (PCs), servers and other ICT devices already widely used for some time in the healthcare sector.
This revolution has embraced all sectors of daily life, opening scenarios that were unthinkable until a few years ago.
One of the key features of IoT devices is their widespread diffusion. In fact, there are billions of smartphones, hundreds of millions of tablets, hundreds of millions of smartwatches and fitness trackers, etc. in the world. This means that technological solutions for the benefit of human health that use these devices can reach an enormous number of people, following them in their daily lives even in remote areas of the planet.
The very important aspect of mobility and accessibility of IoT devices has led to the coining of a new specific term, mHealth, as a subset of eHealth, and has strongly attracted the attention of national and supranational bodies such as the WHO (for example for the great potential in the health sector of emerging countries).