Unlike other industries, the health industry has been relatively slow to adopt new technologies-this can be attributed to the strict regulations in the health domain as well as the sensitive nature of the industry. Despite the cautious approach towards technology, the industry has made significant strides that have redefined the way in which the healthcare providers practice medicine and how patients receive treatment.
According to a study by PwC Health Research Institute, more than 90% of the healthcare providers have adopted the EMR system and a gamut of other digital technologies that have led to improvements in the healthcare sector.
Below, we shed light on some of the benefits that the healthcare has reaped from technology.
1) Internet as the main source of medical information
According to a study conducted by Pew Internet and American Life Projects, there has been an increased number of people seeking healthcare information online. In the same breath, it goes without saying that there’s a growing list of people who use the internet to research their medical issues. The users are not only limited to looking up for symptoms but also exploring the available treatments and medicine on the web. While it may not be a great idea to skip out on the doctor completely, the web has empowered the patients with regards to making a health decision.
2) Accessing patients online
Currently, many of the healthcare providers are now using the internet to reach patients. From performing SEO, creating websites, using email outreach to posting on social media pages, the internet has proven to be a goldmine that healthcare providers can “sell” their services. What’s great about the internet is that it’s not subject to political, geographical or religious boundaries, and can reach millions of people from different continents.
3) Quality treatment
Provision of quality and ultra-efficient hardware is among the most obvious ways that technology has revolutionized the industry. The new machines, medicine, and treatments have saved millions of lives. And unlike the traditional treatment which was more of trial and error, the modern hardware is extremely efficient, precise and delivers quality results. Also, it’s worth noting that technology has considerably cut down the operational cost of the healthcare centers. For instance, underfloor air distribution reduces the energy usage, while improving the air quality and hospital productivity.
4) Better service delivery and worker efficiency
Information technology has made the healthcare safer and reliable. For instance, the implementation of Electronic Medical Records in healthcare centers has seen an easy recording of patient’s medical history. Also, the EMR allows electronic medical storage into a database that can be referred later. With such information, healthcare providers can accurately make a diagnosis, avoid making duplicate test or treatment and see what treatment works or fails on a certain patient.
Aside from service delivery, technology has revolutionized the security strategies for healthcare providers. Now, using encrypted communication and other security features, healthcare providers can safeguard the anonymity and medical details of their patients.
5) Doctors are easier to reach and better at their jobs
Through technology communication tools such as e-mails, videos, e-conferencing, and texts, healthcare providers can get in touch with their colleagues worldwide, as well as their patients. Telemedicine is the epitome of the doctor-patient communication; this is a practice that allows patients to consult healthcare providers. Without relocating, doctors can consult experts to diagnose, treat and research with the need of accessing sophisticated facilities.
When considering how much technology has changed the world, changes in the healthcare certainly fit into that picture, as they’ve made it easier, and convenient for a patient to access high-quality healthcare.