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Open Access Establishment of secure and reliable electromagnetic environment and improvement of medical efficiency by wireless communication

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At Saga University, the Hanada Laboratory seeks to introduce wireless communications in a way that allow them to be safely and efficiently utilised in the hospital environment. Led by Professor Eisuke Hanada, the lab has emerged as a pioneering force in the field of telemedicine. Its ultimate goal is the development and operation management of ICT systems to meet the needs of medical and welfare staff.

Past developments of the lab include a multimedia communication system. Initially designed to enable hospitalised children to participate in school activities with their students and teachers, the technology ended up being used to give physicians working in two remote hospitals where no dermatologists were available real-time access to dermatology specialists at Shimane University Hospital. The system has since been expanded to provide study sessions with university hospital specialists to more rural areas.

The Hanada Laboratory has also developed several ICT systems for real-world use by medical staff. One medical device management system uses radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags to sense the location and use of medical devices. Data monitoring when a device's electromagnetic field is turned on or off allows for more efficient allocation of resources after analysis. Another system they have produced is a sleep condition supervisory system, which allows the location, posture and movement of patients to be recorded by nine sensors located in different positions underneath their mattresses. The group has also developed an injection mixing support system, which actively provides (as opposed to records) information for medical staff. This system was created to give the most up-to-date information on patient injections (i.e. quantity changes, mixing time and other instructions) and so consolidate and ease the jobs of nurses responsible for administering injections.

The Hanada Laboratory's focus is not limited to merely developing ICT systems; it is equally concerned with their proper installation and management. When devices rely on electromagnetic fields to transmit patient information, it is important to prevent interference from electromagnetic noise produced by other devices inside and outside the hospital. As Professor Takato Kudou, one of Hanada's collaborators at Oita University, explains: 'Because of the large number of patients and the importance of maintaining life with medical devices in areas where critical care is given, careful monitoring and continual effort to improve the electromagnetic environment and protect against electromagnetic disturbance is especially important'.
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Keywords: DATA MONITORING; ELECTROMAGNETIC DISTURBANCE; ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELD; ELECTROMAGNETIC NOISE; HOSPITAL ENVIRONMENT; INJECTION MIXING SUPPORT SYSTEM; MEDICAL DEVICE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM; MEDICAL DEVICES; MULTIMEDIA COMMUNICATION SYSTEM; RADIO-FREQUENCY IDENTIFICATION (RFID) TAGS; SENSORS; SLEEP CONDITION SUPERVISORY SYSTEM; TELEMEDICINE; TRANSMIT PATIENT INFORMATION; WIRELESS COMMUNICATIONS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2018

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