The field of remote sensing holds great promise for lifelong and chronic monitoring of vital signs. Key to achieving that goal is the invisible and completely unobtrusive integration into everyday objects, such as bed sheets, office/car chairs, couch or PC screen. In this case, the strength is not in the quality of the acquired signals, but the longitudinal nature, with the potential to reveal slowly changing patterns – possibly symptoms from underlying physiological changes. The analysis of such datasets, currently largely unexplored, will provide new insights into normal versus pathological patterns of changes over very long periods of time.
Another area where remote sensing could play an important role, is in monitoring of patients that cannot withstand continuous skin contact, such as neonates.