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'Body Area Networks' should free hospital bandwidth, untether patients

ComputerWorld, June 5, 2012

The new radio spectrum, approved last month, will be used for Medical Body Area Networks (MBANs)—low-power wideband networks consisting of multiple body-worn sensors that transmit a variety of patient data to a control device. The devices can be attached to a patient in a hospital or post-care settings for ongoing evaluation. The approval also opens up a whole new industry of home monitoring devices for chronically-ill people. For example, 75% of healthcare costs are related to the treatment of chronic conditions, according to Lynne Dunbrack, an analyst with market research firm IDC Health Insights.