It’s amazing to look back and see just how far our world has come technologically. If someone from 100 years ago suddenly found themselves in today’s world, they would think they had been teleported into another dimension.
The same can be said about technology in healthcare. From improved operational efficiency to standards in patient care, the healthcare transformation has enhanced the entire experience for both patients and medical professionals.
The following are five of the top healthcare technology and healthcare industry trends and innovations that are revolutionising the field.
Top 5 Healthcare Technology Trends And Innovations
1. Availability of Information and Big Data
The accessibility of data and the means to store and process it is a hallmark of the technological age. The Internet, intranet systems, search features and the ability for healthcare professionals to rapidly share information have enhanced the synthesis and analysis of data.
“Big data” in healthcare allows the entire field to benefit from comprehensive research studies. These endeavours can access larger and more diverse population groups than ever before. They can also draw from existing studies for comprehensive meta-analyses. This innovation allows medical professionals to stay on top of health care trends, techniques and technologies. This can be used to automatically identify risk factors and recommend the right preventative treatment by comparing patient data with data from thousands of other patients.
2. Improved Communication
Technological innovations in healthcare have facilitated much smoother communication within healthcare organisations. Medical professionals can now use media such as video, online discussion platforms and real-time meeting capacities to communicate and advance the spread of knowledge in the field. Electronic medical records in-house are accessible by all relevant departments and care providers. This results in improved case management, treatments and patient recovery.
3. Electronic Medical Records
Previously, medical information from visits to the General Practitioner (GP), medical specialist, allied health professionals and the dentists were held in separate locations with different health practitioners and hospitals. Electronic medical records allow all patient histories, test results, diagnoses and relevant information to be stored centrally in an online location. The data allows for more focused and accurate care as well as the ability to see health trends for each individual. Medical billing systems allow hospitals, clinics and medical practices to run much more smoothly.
Telemedicine/Telehealth services such as video-conferencing are becoming cost effective ways to complement local health services. It is particularly beneficial to those living in rural, regional and remote communities and requiring regular access to medical specialists who live several kms away. Generally you have a GP, other medical practitioners, nurse practitioners, midwives, health workers and practice nurses providing face-to-face clinical services to the patient during the teleconsultation with the specialist to ensure the correct procedures are carried out. Teleconsultation is also beneficial to health care workers on location, as specialist can provide education and training virtually.
5. Mobility and Mobile Apps
Mobile software applications (aka mobile apps) are key to improving accessibility for patients and healthcare professionals. Mobile apps enable people to easily manage their health and wellbeing; everything from prompting them to get checkups, to finding general medical information or accessing their test results securely online any time, day or night, without having to book in an appointment with their GP and wait days for results. Healthcare professionals on the other hand, can quickly access information relating to diseases and drugs, images for clinical matters, continued education activities and so on.
by Siv Rauv – Elcom