The healthcare industry is going through a metamorphosis owing to the latest technological innovations. Today, many organizations are making significant investments in advanced processes and technologies to minimize the cost and extend the access to proper care facilities. As healthcare providers are trying to deal with the revenue pressure, they are exploring and adopting new care delivery models and shifting to outpatient services to reduce administrative and supply costs.
The healthcare industry is all set to explore the digital revolution to make the process of providing healthcare facilities more seamless and more data-driven so that it becomes simple for both the patients and the healthcare providers to follow through. Speaking of revolution, presented below are some innovations that promise bright prospects for the domain of healthcare.
Telemedicine is becoming the need of the hour with the rapid innovations in the sphere of the healthcare sector. This system is said to be an excellent initiative to mend the gap between patients and physicians. The need to minimize the expenses of health care and the sharp increase in the number of elderly patients also happens to be a vital criterion in the emergence of telemedicine services.
According to several surveys conducted by the nursing assignment help experts, nearly 76% of consumers would be highly inclined in availing the virtually-enhanced healthcare services, and 18% of patients have already been on the receiving end of such services.
Be it personal interaction with a physician, facilities such as medication-related reminders or monitoring blood pressure and blood sugar, patients would be more than happy to receive virtual assistance because telemedicine provides them with both the freedom and accessibility to cutting edge technology in the field of medical science.
2. IoT and Wearables
Patients tend to be more aware regarding the maintenance of their personal health and wellness. In fact, the advent of technology has made it possible for us to use smart wearable and connected devices that ultimately allow us to make healthier lifestyle choices. It leads to specific health conditions, such as Diabetes, Heart Arrhythmia, COPD, Asthma, Pain M
According to various studies, the market for wearable technology has received a major boost with close to 16.7% of growth recorded in 2017, along with a considerable increase in the sales figures. And it has also been revealed that the market for smart wearables will reach the figure of 500 million units by 2021. According to several research and studies, the healthcare wearable market is expected to reach $14.4 billion by 2022, escalating from $6.22 billion in 2017.
3. Gene therapy as a cure
Gene therapy is another promising area in healthcare, which is used to target a non-functioning or missing gene in the DNA of a patient that adds or supersede it with a working gene that can form the required protein. So, the affected cells and tissues that absorb the protein will be able to function normally. With this process, the patient would no longer need any ongoing treatment.
Now, all of this seems to be a rather straightforward process to find a “potential cure”, but it still isn’t clear how the body will react to gene edits, and it’s also unclear how people’s immune system will withstand these interferences. Also, in many health conditions, more than one gene is implicated. However, researchers are actively pursuing this area and attempting to revolutionize healthcare and the ways in which it will be perceived in the years to come.
4. Personalized healthcare and medicine
Personalized medicines cater to the specific needs, lifestyle, and genetic makeup of each patient. It will continue to be a significant trend in healthcare. This presents an opportunity to move away from a one-size-fits-all approach and would result in less ineffective interventions and more fruitful outcomes. For instance, a recent study by PriceWaterhouseCoopers found that using a genetic test on breast cancer patients minimized the requirement for chemotherapy by 34%.
We are already trending towards a healthcare landscape appropriately customized for different patients, both in terms of medicine and treatment. It needs to be ensured that the personalized facilities are available to more patients so that they can be benefitted while seeking treatment.
5. Subscription or direct pay facilities
Consumers who have limited options to avail healthcare facilities find it tough to keep up with the expenses. Similarly, healthcare service providers have even more minimal options. That’s why subscription medicines and cash-based medical facilities are becoming increasingly popular for both patients and providers.
These facilities come with a great deal of transparency. Although this system is currently used for those who have the capacity to make additional expenditures for better services, the majority of these subscription packages have been dedicated to the upper-middle class section. However, several surveys and studies have highlighted that the success of this system can also be implemented for the repressed population as well. In fact, researches are being conducted to open up these facilities to more and more people.
6. Artificial Intelligence
The significance of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is on an upward swing and is going to be a disruptive force that brings the much-needed revolution in the sphere of healthcare in a few more years. The demand for cost-effective treatments and customized medicines are the driving factors for AI in the healthcare sector. AI can be applied in any area of healthcare, beginning from hospital workflow tasks to detecting health conditions, improving workflow productivity, and maintaining the accuracy of diagnosis.
Research conducted in 2014 on the impact of AI in healthcare pointed towards a steady growth of the integration of AI in various areas of the healthcare sector. From 600 million, the estimated growth rate stands at nearly $6.6 billion which is likely to be achieved by the end of 2021. In fact, further research has discovered that a majority of consumers are willing to opt for non-traditional options for maintaining their health and are likely to switch from the care of medical practitioners with the use of AI technologies.
Many organizations from localized startups to the corporate giants like Google, IBM, and Microsoft have already started working on their own AI healthcare projects and are investing more resources to explore the potential that this area has to offer. Soon, machine learning and AI technologies will be adopted across the whole healthcare ecosystem, ranging from simple applications for consumer health to intricate disease management and clinical decision support.
Blockchain technology is becoming a widespread phenomenon across various industries and commercial sectors, and healthcare is one of them. It can be a whole new approach to protect patient data storage and transmission. According to studies, by 2020, approximately 20% of healthcare organizations are likely to go beyond pilot projects and will be implementing Blockchain for patient identification and supply-chain management.
Some vendors have already initiated the process of integration by incorporating it into the EMR/EHR systems. Major companies like Microsoft, Intel, IBM, and Google have even created separate units dedicated to developing Blockchain products, even to be used for healthcare purposes.
Blockchain-oriented healthcare systems can be adopted to solve a myriad of challenges like data security, integrity, portability, and so on.
8. The invasion of cloud computing in healthcare
The cloud technology has opened up many possibilities for both the patients and the medical practitioners alike. The patients can now access their test results through the cloud without having to wait endlessly for it. Studies have estimated that by 2018 more than 60% of the interactions with the healthcare service providers and medical practitioners will take place via mobile devices.
Also, paper filing to maintain the patient’s record is becoming a thing of the past. Hospitals and private doctors are all using the cloud to save the patient’s records and allowing the patients to access through the cloud. In fact, to maintain the laws of patient privacy, the focus has also been on the healthcare IT infrastructure and data security.
9. Robotics for medical care
Robots are the new genie of the medical world. The importance of enhancing medical productivity and minimizing the scope of errors make it necessary to adopt healthcare assistance and automation robots. According to various studies, the medical robotics market is expected to reach USD 12.80 billion at the turn of 2021.
Moreover, researchers have also predicted that by 2020, one in four hospitals with 200+ beds will have deployed robotics to carry out the otherwise time-consuming tasks. It decreases labor and prevents errors, thus bringing about sustainability into their business operations and improving patient safety.
PwC conducted surveys in order to understand people’s reactions to robots providing different kinds of healthcare services. The participants of the survey were asked whether they would be comfortable with a robot to perform a surgical procedure rather than a doctor. The outcomes revealed that up to 73% of all participants would be willing to undergo minor surgery conducted by a robot (minor denotes minimally or noninvasive surgeries like cataract surgery or laser eye surgery). Close to 45% of participants would be willing to opt for major surgery conducted by a robot (major denotes invasive surgery like knee or hip joint replacement or extraction of a tumor).
Wrapping it up,
Some believe the pace at which these developments are being implemented is slow. But there’s no denying of the fact that these technologies are becoming widespread to create a cost-efficient and patient-centric healthcare system.
About the Author
Joanne Criss works as a sales manager in a reputed pharmaceuticals company in the United Kingdom. She has pursued her degree from the UK National University. She has a special affinity for technology and gadgets. She has also been working as an assignment help expert for MyAssignmenthelp.co.uk.