5G, five impacts: Healthcare

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Chris Ashraf

The first installment in a new series exploring the potential benefits of Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband on various industries. First up: healthcare and medicine.

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From the waiting room to the operating room, Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband has the potential to impact healthcare in previously unimaginable ways.

Verizon 5G could eventually power a fundamental shift in healthcare professionals’ approach to diagnosis, intervention and patient recovery. Harnessing the massive bandwidth, super-fast speeds and low latency of Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband, doctors and technicians may soon be able to push the boundaries of prevention and patient care, and, in some crucial cases, save lives.

Discover the impact that Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband may have on the future of healthcare.

1. The 5G impact on medical training that harnesses AR/VR

With its lightning-fast speeds and ultra-low latency, Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband could help reinvent how medical professionals are trained. By integrating augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) applications into their teaching curricula, research hospitals could someday transport students in multiple locations into the operating room in near-real time, where they’d get an upfront view of delicate procedures. With immersive new training methods, the next generation of caregiver can be better prepared to offer critical care when the time comes. 

2. The 5G impact on remote physical therapy

The lack of proximity to healthcare professionals should not prevent someone from receiving important rehabilitative care. AR/VR applications may hold the key to expanding access by permitting remote sessions, and Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband can help make interaction between patients and physical therapists smooth and frequent. Consider VR technology that enables exercises focusing on fine motor skills—subtle, coordinated movements between doctor and patient, synced in near-real time, approximating in-person treatment—outside of a therapy office. The low latency of Verizon 5G could make this type of collaboration possible, effectively overcoming distance and creating new avenues for rehabilitative care.

3. The 5G impact on hologram-aided diagnostics and surgical interventions

Despite a century’s worth of innovations in medical imaging, physicians and technicians still rely on 2D data to understand 3D anatomy. Verizon 5G could someday provide doctors with entirely new methods of “seeing inside” their patients, to aid diagnosis and guide interventions. Harnessing 5G Ultra Wideband’s blazing speed, high bandwidth and low latency, software could someday transform MRI scans into rich, holographic images that radiologists could reference in near-real time, and even project onto the patient in the OR. Using mixed-reality lenses, experts could potentially identify tumors with greater accuracy, minimize guesswork during surgery and ultimately improve recoveries.

4. The 5G impact on remote patient monitoring

Driven by the widespread adoption of 5G, the rapid expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT) could fundamentally change how the healthcare industry uses wearable technology. As the speed and low latency of Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband enables near-real-time connectivity, health trackers may be able to gather and transmit complex, clinical-grade data, creating a new link between doctor and patient. As a result, illnesses could someday be diagnosed and treated more quickly, and medical costs could decrease. According to a McKinsey & Company report, if 15% to 20% of current outpatient consultations and home health visits were to occur electronically, annual healthcare spending could be cut by $25 billion to $40 billion.

5. The 5G impact on accelerating ER readiness

Life-saving medical care doesn’t always begin in the emergency room, and for fast-acting first responders, Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband could someday help improve outcomes when milliseconds matter. Thanks to the high network bandwidth of Verizon 5G, data from a crash scene could someday reach the hospital in near-real time, allowing staff to put potentially life-saving resources in place more rapidly. Similarly, an ultra-low latency network could someday assist in the outfitting of ambulances with more complex point-of-care imaging and diagnostic services. The result: EMTs equipped to take action more quickly and to provide a fuller, more accurate assessment to the doctors who’d rely on them.

Learn more about how Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband is helping fuel medical breakthroughs at the Emory Healthcare Innovation Hub (EHIH), the first of its kind in the nation.

For related media inquiries, please contact story.inquiry@one.verizon.com

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