2021 is on the horizon, and it seems that COVID is on the way out. It has been the major focus of the medical industry this 2020, but the good news with vaccines has given people hope. But healthcare does not stop, and it is continuing its evolution. There are several interesting trends that anyone in the healthcare industry should be looking at closely to ensure that they don’t miss out.
The Role of Telemedicine
In the future, people don’t have to go to the doctor anymore. All they need to do is set the appointment and contact them online. Telemedicine has become a popular option nowadays, with the problem of social distancing and isolation. But it has been around for some time, mainly used by people in remote locations and the disabled. But the COVID outbreak has given telemedicine a massive shot in the arm. People can now consult their doctor from anywhere with additional tests administered remotely. It also helps that people now use various remote devices that can help monitor their health in real-time.
Faster Medical Development
One of the year’s stunning achievements is the quick development of the COVID vaccines. While these were admittedly done because of the emergency, the techniques that allowed for the seamless move from the initial development to final testing will benefit a lot of other medicines. Most of these are mainly technological improvements to old approaches. The logistics were also made smoother by various factors. You can see some of it for other diseases. For example, multiple myeloma research panel recruiting used to take a long time since you had to hunt down the patients individually. But thanks to the internet, gathering the required panel and getting their feedback is much easier.
Better Internet of Things Integration
The Internet of Things is what people call the network of devices with sensors and software that allows for easy transfer of data and cooperation. This can be very beneficial for medical monitoring. For example, many people have a fitness tracker on their arms most of the day. This can give doctors an incredible amount of information about their bodies and performance. You can also potentially monitor glucose levels, temperature, and even blood pressure. With this constant stream of data, imagine a monitor for the elderly. It automatically calls emergency services if any danger levels trigger it.
Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
A lot of healthcare is simple rote work. You do the same things most of the time, like scour through medical records and update them. This can be a major waste of time since you can automate it with artificial intelligence. Additionally, a lot of medical development comes from quick calculations. Whether it is sequencing a new batch of DNA or combing through all the medical papers on a subject, having a machine do it for you is pretty great. With the right approach, a lot of work can be done by the AI.
Big Data Usage
Information is an important part of proper medical treatment. Knowing the symptoms and condition of a patient allows a doctor to make an accurate assessment of them. This is where the current data collection and analysis methods come in. There are a variety of things you can do to your advantage. For example, one company is using the data they collect to find a cure for rare diseases. This is done by examining all the data about the drugs in the database so that some of them can be repurposed for use with other diseases. Normally this would not be possible, but better software allows for the billions of data points to be evaluated properly.
Easy Data Sharing with the Cloud
The modern healthcare industry collects a lot of data. Storing your medical records in files and on paper can be frustrating. This is where the cloud comes in. Instead of searching manually and wasting space on files, you can upload everything to the cloud. This can make it easier to get the data and store it. Imagine getting a patient’s files with a simple click. Additionally, you should be able to share it with other medical professionals with no problem. It can also ensure that they don’t get lost or destroyed since the files are on a server millions of miles away.
The healthcare industry is evolving, and knowing what changes to expect will allow you to keep ahead of the curve. The main driver of it is the various technologies that are emerging. It will be interesting to see all the incredible innovations coming in this new decade.