Digital healthcare is changing the face of medicine. What new digital healthcare trends should we be aware of in 2020?

By the end of 2024, the global digital health market is projected to generate revenue of approximately $423.11 billion. That’s a CAGR of about 19.35% since the beginning of 2018 when the market was valued at $122.66 billion.

During the last decade, there were significant developments in digital health. Health organizations poured billions of dollars into the industry. It was during that period that such digital healthcare trends as telemedicine carved out their name.

This decade will undoubtedly see further advancement of those digital health trends. Inevitably, there will be new entrants in the digital healthcare space as well.

What’s The Driving Force Behind New Digital Healthcare Trends?

The most powerful force behind new digital trends is millennials. This younger generation is generally dissatisfied with traditional models of health care. They prefer greater access to digital healthcare.

To meet their needs, healthcare providers continue to invest in the latest technology in healthcare.

As of 2020, North America still leads the electronic prescription market, with its healthcare IT industry valued at $104.3 billion. Medicare Wire provides more information on the North American medical landscape.

Healthcare Technology Trends in 2020 and Beyond

As new innovations continue to emerge, we can only expect advanced health care trends in the future. This friendly guide looks at ten of these trends. Read on to learn more.

Mobile Healthcare

Mobile health care is quickly emerging as the most prominent digital healthcare trend. Mobile technology trends have seen the proliferation of mobile health apps. These apps optimize patient engagement by allowing you to contact your doctor or a healthcare facility in your hour of need.

In many states, mobile app development has become an essential part of the healthcare system. These apps have significantly contributed to the prevention, management, and treatment of diseases. And as these health apps continue to grow exponentially, they’ll keep transforming the landscape of modern health.

Currently, about 58% of smartphone users have downloaded one or more health apps. New, helpful healthcare apps pop up every day, and their penetration among the population continues to increase.

In 2020, these mobile apps will continue to contribute to better treatment. Besides, they’ll make healthcare more accessible and affordable.

Healthcare Internet of Things 

Internet of Things (IoT) is rapidly transforming the way in which people connect with healthcare providers. Currently, there are many wearable devices that allow you to record data about your health status in real-time.

For instance, if you have a heart condition, the device can collect essential data on your resting heart condition for days. This information is valuable in helping your physician form a comprehensive picture of your condition.

But are people willing to wear medical devices?

The answer is a resounding yes. More than 80% of people are agreeable to wearing these devices. Experts expect the market for wearable tech to reach almost $139,353.6 million globally by 2026.

Virtual Healthcare 

Many American millennials say that they prefer virtual healthcare to traditional models.

Virtual health makes it possible for patients to see health care providers. This is especially important when they can’t get to a healthcare facility. Visiting a doctor online is both easy and affordable.

With videoconferencing, patients can interact with doctors face-to-face and in real-time. This interaction is more engaging than holding a conversation over the phone. More importantly, this avenue allows the patient to present any physical symptoms instead of trying to describe them.

When you opt for video-chat technology, you can expect to receive the same standard of care as you would with a physical appointment. The difference is that you get to enjoy a lot more convenience. As long as you have an internet connection, you can always access professional healthcare advice and treatment.

Telemedicine Services

Of all mobile healthcare apps, telemedicine service is the most popular. So popular is this digital healthcare trend that by 2024, the market for telemedicine will reach $103,897.77 million.

Few apps have played a more significant role in improving doctor-patient interaction. Telemedicine has eliminated the distance between doctors and patients. It has made timely healthcare easy and affordable.

Over half of all people who use telemedicine say that the apps are more effective compared to visiting clinics in person.

Reliance on Artificial Intelligence 

A few years ago, merely mentioning the term artificial intelligence (AI) was enough to create fear in many people. Most pictured AI as machine’s subjugation of humanity. In reality, AI has proven immensely helpful in the healthcare industry and may even save lives in the coming years.

Currently, most leaders in the healthcare industry admit that their facilities are investing heavily in AI. Most hospital executives are confident that investing in AI will yield a solid ROI within four years.

As the new decade starts, it’s clear that AI is the surest path toward accessible and cost-effective healthcare.

But what exactly does implementing AI mean for healthcare? Well, for the most part, administrative work is automated, and resource waste reduced. Further, AI reduces human error, leading to more accurate diagnoses.

Reliance on Data Analytics

An increasing number of healthcare organizations in the US are embracing data analytics. Doing so helps them identify areas they need to improve. Data analytics helps medical providers focus on quality over quantity. The result is enhanced operational, clinical, and financial processes.

Healthcare organizations are now moving to value-based payment models. They now focus on clinical metrics to boost success in providing reliable medical care.

Ultimately, data analytics help medical facilities streamline their services. They also help doctors identify any gaps in patient experience. This way they can provide service that effectively caters to diverse needs.

Greater Investment in Cybersecurity 

Cybersecurity has always posed real risks to organizations of all types and sizes, healthcare included. Cases of medical facilities being paralyzed by ransomware attacks are prevalent the world over.

But ransomware is only one of the countless cybersecurity threats that can throw your health organization into chaos. To protect themselves, organizations have been investing in advanced cybersecurity measures. In 2021, that investment in cybersecurity will exceed $65 billion.

Ensuring robust cybersecurity protection is essential for sensitive medical data. North America still leads the market when it comes to cybersecurity. That’s due to the close collaboration between technology and healthcare in the region.

In 2020, you can expect considerable improvement in compliance and risk management. There’ll also be better access management and antivirus.

More Interest in Robotics

Some people recoil at the mere thought of entrusting their well-being to a robot. The truth is that collaborative robots are proving helpful in the medical industry. Some of them are already working with human doctors.

But the potential uses for robots in medical care go beyond the operating room. The medical robotics market still continues to experience tremendous growth. In the coming days, healthcare robots will undoubtedly be able to conduct varied tasks. Below are just some of these tasks:

  • Assisting physicians to examine patients via telepresence and conduct treatments
  • Shipping medical supplies
  • Disinfecting medical facility rooms
  • Assisting with rehabilitation of patients or prosthetics
  • Packaging medical supplies
  • Automating medical labs

No doubt, medical robots will have the ability to do many other tasks apart from the ones listed above by the end of this decade.

Increased Adoption of 3D Printing

3D printing is dramatically revolutionizing many industries, with healthcare being one of them.

Through 3D printing, one can prototype, customize, research, and manufacture products for healthcare. Thanks to this process, surgeons can replicate any patient-specific organ. They can then use the organ for preparation for the actual surgical procedure.

3D printing also makes it possible to print surgical tools and other medical devices. Moreover, it simplifies the process of developing prosthetic limbs and tissues for transplant. In recent years, 3D printing has also been widely used in orthodontics and dentistry.

Application of 5G

The growth in the capability of healthcare organizations to offer care in remote areas has been unprecedented. Telemedicine has greatly helped make this possible. But telemedicine relies on networks to provide more speed and quality.

Healthcare centers will increasingly turn to 5G to make it easier to send large imaging files to specialists. 5G also promises to make it easier to use AI and IoT technology, besides allowing for remote monitoring of patients.

Digital Health Trends Will Make a Huge Impact This Decade 

Modern digital healthcare trends will continue to influence the healthcare industry in 2020. As the decade starts, you can look forward to advancement in recent healthcare technologies. Without a doubt, a host of other new technologies will become available.

These new trends in digital healthcare point to a healthier, brighter, and more productive future. This is good news for both patients and doctors.

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