Technology has impacted almost every sector, and healthcare is among the industries that have most benefited from it. From advances in surgical practices to the invention of medical instruments such as the fMRI machine, technology has had an extraordinary effect on human life – making them healthier and increasing life expectancies. Years down the line, we are going to see more developments that will continue making our lives better. Below are some of the upcoming trends that are allowing people to manage their healthcare online.
•Electronic Health Records (EHRs). In the past, hospitals’ information systems were clumsy and inefficient in their ability to transfer and share patients’ records. Today the advent of EHRs allows both patients and healthcare providers to see medical records through a click of a button. Online healthcare is faster, efficient, and more integrated into information transfers, making healthcare a better option for everyone.
•Telemedicine. Also called Telehealth, this refers to various methods of advancing the healthcare system based on new technologies. Telemedicine has gained ground recently and is becoming increasingly successful and popular. First, patients can meet with their doctors virtually and order prescriptions online, meaning there is no need to visit physically visit your doctor or pharmacist. This has become especially important during the Covid-19 pandemic when movement restrictions were put in place. Secondly, it has made the provision of healthcare more cost-effective because there are reduced costs when getting the services of a healthcare provider.
•The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT). The combination of IoT development with telemedicine technologies has led to the emergence of the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT). It includes the use of wearables that allow the taking of medical measurements such as blood pressure, skin temperature, and glucose levels. By collecting data, these devices help doctors to determine the health of the person wearing the device. These devices can also be used to alert authorities when serious medical issues occur. More importantly, wearables will give practitioners more interesting options to provide care more efficiently and effectively.
•Blockchain. This trend will significantly improve the healthcare industry in the coming years. Blockchain allows practitioners to distribute transaction records to patients as well as improve data security. Among the greatest advantages of blockchain is interoperability. That is, it provides greater integrity in the use of healthcare information. A good example is that a specialist through a secure system can be granted access to information that all other parties are using. To allow patients to become even freer to give out their information is that flexibility of anonymity can be controlled. Blockchain is a game-changer that will improve transparency and integrity.
•Artificial Intelligence (AI) in healthcare. Artificial intelligence, together with decision-making skills and information processing, will lead up to many exciting possibilities. AI technology can improve the speed, efficiency, and precision of diagnoses. Chatbot technology is another use of AI in healthcare, and though they are not quite ready for use yet, they will assist patients as well as doctors during diagnoses.
•Remote Monitoring Tools. Thanks to the internet, online healthcare allows patients and doctors to monitor their progress from home. This results in cost savings and reduces unnecessary visits to the doctor. An example is pacemakers for patients suffering from heart disease – these can automatically send data to their health centers. For patients with other health conditions and those with chronic illnesses, these systems can allow for the monitoring of patients from a distance.
Technology has gone a long way to ensuring that we get the best healthcare available, benefiting humans worldwide. There will be other technological developments in future years, and we should be open to accept and incorporate future advancements into the health sector and other industries.