healthcare rss sort by issue

Issue 06/2017

Independence Day

How to help people with disabilities be more self-reliant

Using new technology and gadgets to help the elderly and people with disabilities stay independent in and outside the home is the approach favoured by most health specialists, not to mention policymakers and governments. The IEC is preparing International Standards focusing on this approach under the global aegis of its Systems Committee on active assisted living (SyC AAL).

Issue 06/2017

Printed electronics gathering pace

Printed electronics has moved rapidly from lab to manufacturing processes in recent years

Printed electronics is a relatively new technology, but it has already proven a disruptive, yet creative process that allows the production of new products and components, low-cost electronic devices, which open the way to a range of new applications. It has started transforming the electronics industry and many other domains by being included in different manufacturing processes. This new technology led to the creation, in 2011, of IEC Technical Committee (TC) 119: Printed electronics.

Issue 06/2017

Helping prevent a cyber nightmare

With daily cyber attacks on the increase and reaching all areas, IEC work is essential to prevent or, fails this, mitigate their impact

Standardization work by the IEC technical committees (TCs) and subcommittees (SCs), and by the Joint Technical Committee (ISO/IEC JTC 1) set up by the IEC and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), is meant to prevent and mitigate the catastrophic impact of cyber attacks on parts of the critical infrastructure everywhere. In addition, IECEE, the IEC System for Conformity Assessment Schemes for Electrotechnical Equipment and Components, is working on a generic conformity assessment (CA) model which can be applied to cyber security. 

Issue 05/2017

Omnipresent printed electronics

From niche to mass market in a few years

A decade ago, printed electronics was still very much a budding technology destined to a niche market. The emergence and rapid growth of connected devices such as smartphones, tablets and wearables have boosted the internet of things (IoT) and offered new avenues of development to the printed electronics sector.

Issue 05/2017

Securing critical infrastructure all the way to the top

Protecting myriad connected devices will require a holistic approach to security risks

As more and more objects are connected, communicate and interact with each other, in what is labelled the internet of things (IoT), they become building blocks in larger systems. Known and unknown vulnerabilities in this wealth of objects are bound to attract cyber attacks that can bring down entire critical installations in many countries. Protection of IoT components against cyber threats, as well as of the systems that integrate them, is fast becoming a key priority. 

Issue 02/2017

Independence means everything

Assistive technologies help tackle the challenges posed by ageing and disabilities

What immediately comes to mind when evoking active assisted living (AAL) is that it is essential in helping senior citizens keep as good a quality of life as possible. The focus is obviously on the elderly in industrialized countries where the population is ageing rapidly. But AAL represents more than that – it is meant for all people who suffer from illnesses or physical, mental and social disabilities. The general concept is to ensure that they live their life independently and comfortably in their own environment for as long as they can manage.

Issue 02/2017

Robots pick up the challenge of home care needs

Growing number of dedicated robots for the care sector to cover multiple tasks for carers and patients

The demands posed by a rapidly ageing global population are leading manufacturers of robots to develop technology for providing care and rehabilitation for elderly and impaired people in their own homes. 

Issue 02/2017

Expanded scope for SyC AAL

IEC work to help people remain active longer

To deal with Active Assisted Living (AAL) issues, the IEC has established a Systems Committee, IEC SyC AAL. This SyC has the role of promoting safety, security, privacy and cross-vendor interoperability in the use of AAL systems and services, and of fostering standardization which boosts their usability and accessibility. Its role and scope are constantly being expanded.

Issue 01/2017

Tech trends 2017

Insights and predictions by Shawn DuBravac, chief economist, CTA

For the first time in history, voice recognition has reached a level close to human understanding. This opens up new opportunities, notably in replacing the smartphone as a ubiquitous interface. The sensorization and digitization trends of previous years are now leading to adaptive automation and highly-specialized applications that fundamentally transform the user experience. Last but not least augmented (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are entering the real world of business.

2016
Issue 07/2016

Smart assistance

IEC takes systems approach for standardization in Active Assisted Living

One of the emerging trends of the 21st century is the ageing of the world population. 

Issue 07/2016

Portable medical devices radically change healthcare delivery

Wireless technology is revolutionizing the way we approach chronic diseases and other health-related conditions

In our mobile world, portable smart devices keep us connected and able to access information anytime, anywhere. The healthcare industry has also embraced connected technology in the form of medical wearables and portable devices. These offer accurate real-time monitoring, diagnosis and tailored treatment of conditions, such as some types of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Issue 07/2016

IEC work supports cross-sector AAL

IEC plays a growing role helping those seeking to remain active to access a variety of services

To deal with Active Assisted Living (AAL) issues, the IEC has established a Systems Committee, IEC SyC AAL. This SyC has the role of promoting safety, security, privacy and cross-vendor interoperability in the use of AAL systems and services, and of fostering standardization which boosts their usability and accessibility. 

Issue 07/2016

Rapid growth in home use of medical devices requires new standards

IEC work underpins fast growing support for home use of health and wellness devices

Why are home use medical and wellness devices drawing so much attention and growing at an explosive rate? It could be argued that this results from the nexus of the Internet of Things (IoT), the “super-aging” of societies around the world (which is directly tied to patients wanting to be comfortable in their home environments instead of in sterile impersonal clinical environments), the portability of devices, the growth of wearable technologies, the increasing costs of healthcare and the huge regulatory burden/costs of obtaining approval by national regulators. Also, there has been significant growth in the number of standards and regulations that apply to medical devices, especially around software, health informatics, privacy and security issues.

Issue 06/2016

Share your work

We need your stories

Take the 169 countries in the IEC family, the 20 000 technical experts who work in standards development, the many Certification Bodies (CBs) and Test Laboratories (TLs) in the IEC Conformity Assessment (CA) Systems, and add to the mix the rapid pace at which technologies are evolving today and you have hundreds, if not thousands of stories that can be told within the IEC community. 

Issue 06/2016

Who says water and electricity don’t mix?

Access to water resources for all uses rests on electricity

Poor water quality and water scarcity continue to pose a major threat to human health and are responsible for millions of deaths every year. Extracting water and treating used and contaminated waters requires complex installations which depend almost entirely on electrical and electronic systems and equipment. Standardization work by many IEC Technical Committees (TCs) and Subcommittees (SCs) is essential to ensure that people across the world have access to appropriate water supply and water treatment. 

Issue 06/2016

Electricity access is key

Message from Frans Vreeswijk, IEC General Secretary & CEO

IEC work impacts all aspects of life. Electricity and electronics are the cornerstone for all economies in developing and developed countries. IEC International Standards together with IEC Conformity Assessment Systems support 12 out of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Issue 06/2016

Keeping our powered lives safe

IECEE offers an efficient system for testing the quality, performance and energy use of many electronic devices

From the smartphone alarm first thing in the morning to switching off the lights last thing at night, many products and systems in our daily lives run off electricity. We use the hairdryer, washing machine, stove, get on and off transport and walk through automated doors at the office, take the elevator, fire up the computer and purchase items online, expecting that everything will work reliably and safely.

Issue 04/2016

IoT on the IEC map

First global workshop for Internet of Things Standards held in Berlin

IEC, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) organized a joint workshop on Standards for Internet of Things on 13 May 2016 in Berlin, Germany.

Issue 04/2016

Blending the real and virtual worlds

Industry is increasingly using VR/AR applications creatively

Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technology is all around us. Whether playing a mind-blowing game, training for surgery, enhancing classroom learning, or stepping inside a building that hasn’t yet been constructed to solve problems before they happen, diverse industry sectors are using VR/AR applications in creative ways. According to a report by Digi-Capital, a company advising AR/VR, mobile and games leaders in Asia, Europe and the US, AR/VR could hit USD 150 billion revenue by 2020, with AR accounting for USD 120 billion and VR for the remaining USD 30 billion.

Issue 02/2016

Relying on healthcare wearables

IECQ meets all requirements for safe, green electronic components

The doctor-patient relationship has evolved tremendously in the past decade or so. There was a time when any medical exam had to be performed at a hospital or a doctor’s practice. The recent and rapid emergence of home healthcare technologies is slowly changing the whole medical landscape.

Issue 02/2016

mHealth on the rise

Mobile healthcare is transforming the medical environment

Mobile technology is affecting almost every facet of our lives, at home, in the workplace and everywhere in between. The emergence of smart devices in the last decade has also had a major impact in the healthcare sector.

Issue 02/2016

Safeguarding fast expanding healthcare data

Growing reliance on electronic data in the healthcare environment has security implications for patients and healthcare providers

Recent years have witnessed a rapidly growing volume of healthcare-related data being collected from a variety of sources that include patients’ records, and information provided through home monitoring or wearable smart devices.

Issue 01/2016

The wearable future

Keeping track of ourselves

In our mobile world, we carry our lives in our portable devices and expect to be able to access information anytime, anywhere. On a train, in a shop, out walking, we surf the net, communicate through social media and messaging and listen to music on our smart phones. We have also entered the age of continual self-monitoring, be it the number of steps we take, our heart rate, glucose levels or sleeping patterns, because it can help improve our lives and just because we can.

2015
Issue 07/2015

Embracing cage-free colleagues

A new breed of robot is extending the benefits of automated industry to smaller manufacturers

Smaller businesses are becoming more streamlined and competitive thanks to the development of cobots or collaborative robots, capable of working safely with humans along assembly lines.

Issue 06/2015

Threats lurking on medical electronic data

Cyberattacks on healthcare establishments are a growing threat

Over the years the healthcare sector has become increasingly reliant on an IT infrastructure for the proper and safe operation of its equipment and to manage patients' medical records. Healthcare establishments, long spared cyberattacks aimed at stealing confidential information, are now facing unprecedented attempts to breach into their IT infrastructure. The IEC has been developing means to protect the integrity of IT systems and equipment in the healthcare environment for many years.

Issue 06/2015

Always safer medical electrical equipment

IEC standardization work ensures medical electrical equipment and systems are safe to use and operate

Medical care rests on trust. Trust between patients and medical staff and trust of the latter the equipment they use for examining and treating patients. IEC International Standards are developed specifically to ensure medical electrical equipment and systems are safe to operate, for the well-being of patients and users alike.

Issue 01/2015

Tech trends 2015

Insights from author of Digital Destiny Shawn DuBravac

The 2015 CES was again a show of records, reflecting the growing importance of consumer electronics and connected devices.

2014
Issue 03/2014

The healthcare revolution

State-of-the-art technological developments open up new perspectives

Healthcare is undergoing nothing short of a revolution with key advances in long-established technologies and major development in new areas which all depend on electrotechnology.