Like many other industries, healthcare is also embracing a number of new technologies and, consequently, some substantial transformations as well. Patient experiences and healthcare deliveries have experienced huge improvements. Digitization is transforming the healthcare industry in significant ways helping it to excel in every aspect and provide patients a safe and healthy life. Not only the healthcare organizations are now better equipped to take care of the patients,the patients also have become more involved and conscious about managing and monitoring their own health, as well as engaging with their healthcare providers. With the explosion of healthcare information technology, a number of devices have made their way into the market opening up endless opportunities for the consumers as well as healthcare professionals. Let’s have a look at the technologies that are, lately, transforming the healthcare industry.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is having rapid advancements in healthcare. With the help of this technology, healthcare sector is solving a number of problems of hospitals as well as patients. Over 80% of organizations are actively using AI today and it is expected that by the year 2020, the industry would be spending approximately $55 million on artificial intelligence. AI helps healthcare providers manage the patients’ data or medical reports which, in turn, helps them providing faster and better care to the patients. AI helps a great deal in treating patients that need personalized attention or chronic care.
Internet of Things
Internet of Things (IoT) has brought significant advancements to healthcare by providing better treatment options and reduced healthcare cost. IoT allows real time monitoring of patients through connected devices. For instance, a physician who is travelling to a different city can collect and review his patient’s data through smartphone. The technology also helps doctors save lives in cases of emergency. IoT also helps in data exchange and interoperability which lead to more effective healthcare solutions. A number of organizations in healthcare sector have already been making use of IoT and in the coming years more of them are expected to implement the same. Research suggests that by the year 2025, IoT will expand to approximately 75 billion devices.
Augmented reality is another technology that has already been bringing innovations to healthcare industry. Experts say that in the coming years AR is expected to be a routine in healthcare. Augmented reality helps in providing quicker and personalized healthcare to patients. Statistics suggest that in the next few years digital healthcare services would account for more than 5% of the global healthcare expenses. AR overlaps the user’s view with a computer generated image and helps surgeons in detecting or operating tumors more effectively. It also facilitates better visualization of problems and treatment progress.
In healthcare there is an ever increasing need of aggregating and managing the huge database generated by other technologies. In this regard, blockchain promises to deliver effective solutions. Techies are continually trying to evaluate and implement blockchain in healthcare ecosystem to transform things for better. Blockchain technology provides an advanced data management system which systematizes, stores, and shares critical data across the users. Experts have identified huge potential of the blockchain technology and have already begun implementing it in the various aspects of healthcare.
Robotics is all about managing time consuming tasks and minimizing human labor so that the workforce can focus on other more essential tasks. Research suggests that by the year 2020 one in four hospitals having 200 or more beds will have robotics for handling tedious tasks, preventing human errors and reducing human labor. This in turn will improve the overall efficiency and patient safety. Automation of healthcare services through robotics will not only help in reducing cost but also in improving patient’s comfort.
A new wave of promising technologies has already engulfed the healthcare industry over the last decade. Although we have seen significant transformations, more improvements and innovations are expected to be achieved in the coming years.