TMCnet Feature
April 07, 2020

The Impact of Technology on Healthcare Industry

The application of technology has brought about several welcome changes in the field of healthcare in recent years. Thanks to the latest technology, today’s patients have access to a myriad of minimally-invasive procedures, new and cutting-edge treatments, as well as the best diagnostic tools. The availability of intuitive mobile apps targeted treatments, and remote consultations with specialists have led to improved patient care.  Moreover, the advent of the latest technology has also improved the outcome of several alternative healthcare practices.

Mentioned below are some key changes in the healthcare sector caused by the latest technological innovations.

  • Health Record Digitization: Bulky and dusty paper files are now slowly making their way out to accommodate digital records. These digital records can be uploaded securely to the cloud and can be accessed remotely by healthcare professionals as well as patients. This makes it quick and easy to store, manage, and transmit data. More informed and better medical decisions can be taken because the professionals and patients have access to support for clinical decisions. Health record digitization also facilitates the delivery of efficient healthcare to remote areas that are inaccessible.
  • Mobile App Technology: Mobile apps are now a part of a common man’s lifestyle. There are several medical apps that provide patients quick access to accurate medical information. These apps can also be used to receive reminders for taking medicines, keep track of doctor’s appointments, etc. For people looking to get healthier, there are apps capable of offering customized solutions by tracking our activity levels and food intake. There are also apps for physicians that can reduce time spent on routine tasks such as filing and recording maintenance. Mobile apps are extensively used these days by physicians to improve diagnosis, solve problems, and access critical drug information. With the help of medical apps, the doctors can also interact with their patients directly, accurately record their vital signs, maintain patient consultation logs, and achieve greater procedural efficiency.
  • Improved Patient Care: Today, the healthcare community has several potent technology tools at their disposal to improve the quality of patient care. With the availability of electronic health records, complete medical histories of patients can be accessed right away. This enables healthcare professionals to take well-considered medical decisions and quickly identify possible medication errors. Patient care can also be enhanced by using radio-frequency identification or RFID technology.  This technology facilitates real-time tracking of location, identification, and communication. 3D printing is another emerging technology that is used extensively these days to create customized dental devices, prosthetics, and even hearing aids.  Virtual reality devices and apps are also being used nowadays for helping ease anxiety and depression symptoms in patients with mental illnesses and older people. The use of gene therapy in treating cancer and robotic knee replacement are two more examples of improved patient care resulting from the latest technology.  
  • Improved Alternative Healthcare:  The advent of technology has also made its impact on alternative medicine. We all know how aromatherapy has been practiced for centuries by using certain essential oils and scent diffusers. In recent years, there have been noteworthy developments involving aromatherapy and VR and AI technologies. Many experts believe that there are plenty of potential new applications of aromatherapy when used with technologies like AI and VR.

  • Telemedicine and Telehealth: Telemedicine is used now with great results to facilitate consultation between patients and specialists regardless of their location. This technological innovation helps overcome distance barriers and save lives by providing critical care in emergency situations. Telemedicine allows patients to receive home care and support by using telemedical devices. The store-and-forward feature in telemedicine helps transmit medical images, biosignals, and other information to a specialist for asynchronous consultations. Remote patient monitoring is another important benefit of telemedicine.

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