Currently, the world is in a state of health emergency due to the widespread deadly disease known as coronavirus. Due to the emergence of this deadly disease, the World Health Organization (WHO) has stated a global health emergency. There has been an increase in the number of infected people from Wuhan, China with coronavirus.
Based on the reports, as of January 30, 2020, more than 8,000 people have been infected with the virus. The virus has spread in every province of China and has already been detected in over 20 countries.
The main concern is that we are still in an era where technology is important everywhere, and if that is there how can technology help in curbing the spread of not only coronavirus but other deadly diseases that cause fear and worst of it all death. Let us understand through this blog –
What is the potential of IoT in infectious disease control?
The Internet of Things (IoT) is known as a network of interconnected systems, and advances in data analytics, artificial intelligence (AI), and widespread connectivity can assist by offering a fast warning system to curb the spread of infectious diseases.
Across the entire Asia-Pacific region, China is at the forefront by adopting IoT, then comes Japan. By the year 2025, China is expected to spend over $254.6 billion in IoT. The easiest response might be for enterprises, cities, and national governments to collectively develop a significant global network of devices to detect viruses.
However, this approach requires adequate strategizing, planning, and implementation on a global scale. The entire foundation of democracy and compel governments would have to prioritize the needs of the main planet first, then the needs of their citizens will be taken care of.
There is no doubt that the most reasonable solution is often the most difficult to implement. The amount of time required to make the solution a reality would no doubt will be the most important achievements in the entire history of humanity.
There are lots of practical ways in which IoT can help presently and also in the future. The initial and vital stage in infectious disease control is detection. While a global network of devices is not likely to occur in the anticipated future, China can implement such a network in the country.
China has a background of implementing wide-area IoT solutions (i.e., video surveillance) on a platform that has not been seen before. Hence, why not a network of virus-detection devices?
Alongside with facial recognition and location, there should be existing surveillance cameras to identify, track, and monitor people that may have already contracted the coronavirus.
An extra layer will also be added to track every person that an infected patient has contacted. Although, to a lot of people, it may sound like a police state. Eventually, influencing IoT and AI may be the most reasonable and significant way of preventing highly infectious deadly diseases from spreading speedily in a world that is decreasing in size daily with air travel.
How can IoT Help In Preventing The Spread
The main ability of IoT can communicate in real-time about the issues it was built to detect. Which is precisely what we would want to do in any epidemic situation that we might be faced with, such as coronavirus.
It would be an easy thing to detect an environment that can be very conducive to such viruses thriving. It has been discovered that the present threatening strain of the Novel coronavirus grows effectively in lower temperatures and low humidity environments.
As a result, if in a public place, the environmental conditions are monitored by IoT devices. The IoT devices/solutions could be developed to detect such danger zones within work environments. And also, be able to express its detection out either by alarm or auto-change the air conditioning parameters.
Environmental control is as vital as isolation to prevent the spread of the deadly disease. Therefore, implementing this in public places will help in preventing the spread of the disease by touching other objects used by others.
For novel coronavirus, its present strain may not be in a position to exist on surfaces, but with time this can also change. Also, the case of environmental control and detection of danger zones for various types of microorganisms can apply to other viruses and bacteria.
IoT Is easy to implement
Implementing IoT is one of the easiest and simplest systems to implement. All that is required is that the IoT devices are needed to be positioned at different locations and places that are more liable to public transit, thereby leading to the spread of the deadly disease.
It requires gateways that will enable them to talk to the cloud infrastructure. The cloud infrastructure based on the type of implementation and rules implemented will directly send the signals or alarms to take the required action, which can change from just a notification to the activation of the automatic controller to modify the climate around.
Currently, it’s not certain that there are any Bio-IoT sensors available for the detection of Pathogens at this point. But certainly, this looks to be the way forward, and there are lots of research that seems to be happening around it.
These kinds of sensors would certainly be made available in the future to detect the presence of any specific airborne virus or bacteria. The future blow test might have the ability to detect not only alcohol, but if you also have a Corona or Sars virus and will automatically send out an alarm, most especially in places like the airports.
Therefore, the future of IoT is surely going to be colorful, brighter, bigger, and massive, as lots of such abilities or skills get added to its functions.
Currently, there are some short- and long-term opportunities and recommendations to control the spread of the coronavirus. In the short term, consistent diligence in monitoring every compromised person as they pass through customs at the airports or border crossings and influencing AI-sensors to assist with targeted quarantines and fast treatment to alleviate the spread of the coronavirus.
And for the long term, the United Nations, WHO, as well as other global agencies, can begin the process of getting buy-in from governments across the world. Thus, creating an early detection system to expose these infectious diseases before they become global emergencies.
Global emergencies are more likely to develop economic uncertainty and enhance volatility in stock markets. The global detection system can help decrease uncertainty in the market and also offer governments with the economic incentive to act as quickly as possible.