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Wireless Body Area Network (WBAN) allows the integration of low-power, miniaturized, intelligent, invasive or/and non-invasive wireless sensor nodes that are used to monitor the health status of a patient with real-time updates to a base-station/physician. Since multiple low-power sensor nodes are deployed in/on a human body, Medium Access Control (MAC) protocols are required to share the channel efficiently and to control the dominant sources of energy waste. This paper evaluates the performance of IEEE 802.15.4 MAC, WiseMAC, and SMAC protocols for a non-invasive WBAN. The IEEE 802.15.4 MAC protocol is improved for low-rate applications by sending beacons according to the traffic rate. Performance results show that the improved IEEE 802.15.4 MAC protocol outperforms traditional IEEE 802.15.4 MAC, WiseMAC, and SMAC protocols in terms of energy consumption and delay.