Israeli Hospitals Use 5G To Innovate Digital Medicine

In Israel, as in many other Western countries, the development of digital medicine has become a priority.

Poria Hospital, located in Tiberias in northern Israel, is the leading medical center for the large region from the Lower Galilee to the Golan Heights, which runs through the Jordan Valley. It is one of two Israeli hospitals selected by the government to benefit from 5G.

“We’re using technologies that allow doctors anywhere in the world to diagnose and see their patients using cameras and other sensors, and for that we absolutely need a high-speed network like what 5G offers,” said Danny Zohar, MD, director of hospital information. security at the Israeli Ministry of Health.

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If successful, the pilot project will be extended to other health institutions. The advantages are many.

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“With 3G, the amount of data you could receive was limited. With 5G, you really have reliable coverage. For example, when you’re in the basement of your house, you lose Wi-Fi, but you’re always connected to the cellular network, so if you have this advantage in a hospital where services have to be connected 24 hours a day, that’s fantastic,” said Liron Ben- Horin, vice president of systems engineering at One layer.

The 5G network offers much greater flexibility to hospitals in the event of a crisis, as it uses radio waves rather than physical cables.

“One of the other benefits is that if you want to add a unit to your hospital, you don’t need cables, so you save a lot of time and money.” For example, during the pandemic, we had to build emergency units dedicated to the coronavirus at Rambam Hospital in Haifa. It took us a few months, while with 5G it would take us a few seconds,” says Dr. Zohar.

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This mobile network was previously reserved for mobile phone operators, but more and more countries are allowing private companies to use these radio bands. The danger, however, lies in cyber attacks.

“Everyone is interested in information held by hospitals: hackers who demand ransom from hospitals, or hostile countries.” Attacks target hospitals every day and every minute. “The most expensive data on the darknet is medical information, which is used for research purposes or to harm the country,” said Dr. Zohar.

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Nearly 70 percent of cyber attacks worldwide target hospitals. To counter them, the Israeli company One Layer has developed technology to protect private 5G networks.

“We make sure that if someone has access to one of the private computers on the network, they can’t access even more confidential areas and get information about a patient, get access to a scanner or a device that is critical to the operation of the hospital.” Ben-Horin explained.

Installing 5G in hospitals will further improve the quality of remote care. Israel’s performance in this area has already been praised by the World Health Organization, and the country has even been chosen to host the first international center for digital health.

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