Health technologies are changing the face of healthcare and are truly redefining how human beings are living. Medical technology has undergone explosive growth in the last few months and it is easy to appreciate how much technology has transformed life as we know it. In the last couple of decades specifically, healthcare has moved from a one size fits all approach to a customized and individualized treatment all thanks to advances in technology.
Today, the approach to healthcare is more preventative rather than reactive. It is also a lot less institutional and more home and community-based. The hope is to reduce hospitalizations and hospital visits while improving the long-term care of chronic conditions. The objective has always been to make healthcare more efficient and more sustainable not just for the benefit of the patients but for the healthcare system at large.
The advances that have been made in the field of healthcare will only keep improving as time goes by. It’s simply inevitable. Sooner or later, every industry is transformed by technology. So let’s take a closer look at some of the health technologies that have truly redefined our lives:
Artificial intelligence, as Codrin Arsene @ Digital Authority states, has been around for a very long time, whether we realize it or not. However, he argues, it is only more recently that it has started to impact the way we live our day-to-day lives. In healthcare, it is changing things for the better. AI algorithms are now being used by various healthcare industries to mine medical records, as well as create personalized treatment plans.
AI is also rapidly being used for drug manufacturing. Thanks to AI, chemists, and pharmaceutical companies are now being able to create new drugs a lot faster than ever imagined. Companies are relying on supercomputers to create new therapies that are a lot more effective and cheaper than old ones.
AI technology such as Google’s DeepMind has allowed faster and more accurate breast cancer analysis. This AI algorithm can outperform all human radiologists and it does so by reading pre-selected data sets that identify the presence of breast cancer. These are just a few examples of how AI is being utilized to redesign healthcare as we know it.
There is no doubt of AI’s unimaginable potential. Healthcare Weekly agrees that within the next few years, AI will completely change every facet of our modern lives. And the field of healthcare and medicine will be right at the center of all the action.
Virtual Reality just like AI used to be one of those technologies that only resided in fiction novels and sci-fi movies. But Virtual Reality is transforming not just the lives of the patients themselves, but also the physicians and other healthcare professional’s lives as well. Today, future surgeons are being trained to carry out procedures through VR.
Software programs are helping to boost surgeons’ productivity levels by as much as 230%. Because of the developed software, VR-trained surgeons are a lot faster and more accurate compared to their conventionally trained counterparts. VR technology is also proving instrumental for proper and effective pain management in patients.
Patients can now use VR headsets to visualize calming landscapes so that they can endure pain, people suffering from various illnesses including cardiac problems and post-surgical pain have demonstrated a decline in pain levels when they use VR technology to divert them from painful stimuli. Even patients suffering from mental health issues have been known to use VR to enhance their overall hospital and treatment experiences.
More and more people are taking an interest in their health and this is closely tied to wearable technology. Innovations such as Fitness trackers and sensors are empowering more and more individuals to retake control of their health. These days, fitness trackers have become so advanced that they even allow wearers to monitor and track not just their workouts and fitness levels but also their sleep.
More advanced trackers can even track one’s oxygen levels. The beauty of wearable technology is that it gives individuals full control, making people the point of care. With people being able to monitor their health easily at home, they can make more informed decisions about their health whether that is regarding their weight, stress levels, or cognitive abilities.
Like many of the technologies listed above, medical tricorders were only found in fictional works. A medical tricorder is a gadget that allows doctors to scan a patient with a handheld device. The device then lists all the patient’s vital signs and other parameters so that a diagnosis can be given.
An example of a palm-sized device that does this is the Viatom CheckMe Pro. When a doctor scans a patient with it, it measures one’s ECG, heart rate, oxygen level, temperature, blood pressure, sugar levels, and so much more. Another great example that has already received approval from the FDA is the BioSticker.
The BioSticker is a small thin sticker that is used to measure a wide range of parameters including sleep status and heart rate. In the future, it is expected that these technologies will become so advanced that they will even be able to detect antibodies and abnormalities in DNA just with a simple handheld gadget.
Technological advancements and technologies, many of which were considered unfathomable a couple of decades ago, are allowing people to live a higher quality of life and reducing healthcare costs. Healthcare technology has also proven itself invaluable for improved early diagnosis and treatment of disease.
Although these technologies have done a lot to change our lives. They also come with a few downsides. For instance, because patient care is so data-centric these days, the threat of cyber-attacks has never been more real. The vast amount of data available to both healthcare professionals and patients is forcing doctors to think carefully about how data is shared and protected.
As such, there is a great need for healthcare organizations to be more vigilant even as they continue to be faced with the pressing desire to keep up with the rapid changes in technology