Technology advances make our lives easier in many ways. Some of the most important ones, are the advances of technology in healthcare. Through the combination of technology and human intervention, processes in medicine are faster and doctors can bring better decisions with less human error.
Changes technology brings to medicine require years of research and development, clinical testing, regulatory approval. They also require long process for implementation, a new operating protocol and staff training.
Here are some examples of how recent advancements in lightweight and heavyweight technology in the medical sector, provide a more personalized doctor-patient approach and improved healthcare services.
We all have a set of mobile apps on our mobile phones. Mobile applications enable people to easily manage their health and wellbeing, by making medical information and test results easily accessible online, at any time. We no longer have to book appointments, or wait days/weeks for results. Moreover, there are a lot of mobile apps that take care for our fitness activities and nutrition, which can improve our health by providing us reports on our lifestyle in no time, free of charge.
Medical facilities use a lot of heavyweight technologies to store, manage and access their data. Those centralized systems, provide medical staff with all the necessary data information, provide analysis and data synthesis.
Having all of their data at one place, medical doctors can use systems to automatically identify risk factors by comparing patient data with data from thousands of other patients. Therefore, patients get more accurate treatment, and diseases can be prevented before they cause any damage.
Telehealth services such as video-conferencing, online discussions, digital meetings, have made it very easy to overcome locational barriers when it comes to medicine. Since Internet is widely used in rural and urban areas, it is a cost-effective solution to complement local health services. Medical specialist from all around can easily communicate and share information with each other, whenever they feel the need to.
Electronic medical records are a great example of that. This heavyweight technology provides a more centralized approach to data and more effective communication. Previously, medical information from visits to different medical specialists were held in separate locations.
Now, with electronic medical records, all patient histories, test results, diagnoses and relevant information are stored centrally in an online location. They bridge geographic and timely gaps. They also synchronize the message, so that various specialists that treat the same patient, can easily understand and share patient records between each other. Electronic medical records collect, organize and analyze patient data, resulting in greater efficiency and reduced human error.
Wearable technologies come in the form of clothing or accessories. They include sensors to send information to healthcare providers at the first sign of a medical problem. Due to the significant information they send in real-time, wearables could decrease the number of people hospitalized each year, in the long run.
These programs provide a more targeted approach for each patient. They give instant feedback, track patterns and show progress to the health care provider using data generated by the patient himself. Instead of data collected by tests, wearables help patients feel like they’re in control of their own health and allow them to monitor themselves.
With wearable tech, there is potential for a more proactive approach to healthcare. Instead of reacting to health issues, wearables help doctors and patients take preventive action before the event happens. This kind of technology, is especially useful to monitor vulnerable patients from a distance, like vulnerable family members. Wearables can help keep an eye on vulnerable patients while they’re recovering at home, to monitor them and prevent complications.
Moreover, wearables provide benefits for better self-care, also. By keeping an insight into their personal health, people get more motivated for self-improvement. This kind of technology, also has affordable prices, so there is low barrier to entry for many.
Patients get much more informed about their personal health and actively involved in healthier living. They engage in changing unwanted behavior and actively participate in care decisions. Therefore, they’re more compliant with treatment, and enjoy more favorable outcomes.
By using wearables, healthcare providers can deliver better and quicker treatment, with improved quality and savemore patient lives.