The healthcare landscape is reshaping with the faster adoption of patient engagement technology to provide personalized, preventive & participatory care to patients. Innovative digital health solutions are pushing boundaries in delivering better healthcare with reduced costs, & improving all aspects of the healthcare system. Modern healthcare services optimize technology and provide intelligent, timely & tailored services leveraging EHR 2.0 to telemedicine, data analytics & Intelligent Automation & much more.
According to the research, the US healthcare industry, valued at $142.9B in 2022, is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.48% from 2023-2030, showing immense potential for growth & innovation.
Furthermore, the US census bureau states that more than 50 million adults in the US are above 65+, comprising 16.5% of the total population. The healthcare spending of the US population has increased, amounting to 18.3% of GDP in 2021. And with time, this spend will increase. Healthcare facilities need more infrastructure & technology support to cater to the demand & provide personalized patient care, making healthcare cost-effective & accessible to most people.
Current Challenges Faced by the US Healthcare Industry:
Healthcare institutions continue to grapple with regulations, budgets, legacy systems, and staffing shortages. Other challenges include:
- Escalating costs of care delivery
- Inaccessibility to affordable healthcare services
- Lack of Interoperability between healthcare systems
- Cost & operational challenges in adopting the latest technology
- Inadequate chronic disease management
- Discrepancies in data
- Limited scope of Personalized Patient Care
The key market players like providers, payees & payers aim to remove the barriers of high healthcare costs, control market share & scale, and broaden their service & capabilities to support better patient outcomes. But it leads to the consolidation of the market, restricting access to healthcare due to high costs & closure of hospitals.
HealthTech solutions are looking to disrupt the market with a direct-to-consumer, online service delivery model aided by the rapid progress in software, connected devices, wearables, AI, and more. According to Gartner, innovation is accelerating rapidly in medicine, with new players strongly challenging the status quo. The business leaders look forward to reducing costs & optimize efficiencies at scale.
The new non-traditional players are transforming primary healthcare services. Healthcare is shifting from clinics to homes, digital platforms & retailers. Prominent retailers like CVS, Walgreens, and Walmart are revolutionizing primary care. Dollar General is teaming up with DocGo to bring mobile clinics to three stores in Tennessee.
As the healthcare industry evolves, we have an opportunity to shape the future of our field so that our families, friends & communities can access the best healthcare services. This was emphasized by American Hospital Association President and CEO Rick Pollack during the AHA Annual Meeting Federal Forum plenary.
The key areas that are the focus of healthcare innovation are:
- Wellness & disease prevention
- Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM)
- Screening & Diagnosis
- Personalized care delivery
- Finance & operations
Healthcare solutions comprised of the following technologies play an instrumental role in shifting the dynamics of healthcare delivery.
So, let’s take a close look at these technologies:
EHR 2.0: The cloud-based EHR 2.0 enables up-to-date digital records of patients containing the entire history, diagnoses, treatments, and medications to be accessed from anywhere by healthcare professionals. The information can be shared seamlessly between systems to avoid duplication of treatments & tests. AI-powered EHR 2.0 will change healthcare delivery dynamics by providing intelligent support to healthcare providers. There is more focus on offering accurate care delivery & ensuring patient satisfaction.
Wearable devices & sensors: Wearable devices like fitness trackers & smartwatches enable users and healthcare providers to closely monitor key health parameters like heart rate, sleeping patterns, activity levels, stress levels & much more. All the data from wearable devices are used to track patients remotely & monitor their health closely with IoMT devices & 5G giving real-time insights into patients’ health & support a robust healthcare system.
Telemedicine: Telemedicine is accelerating patient healthcare delivery via virtual healthcare platforms. Now patients can contact healthcare givers from the comfort of their homes and derive the benefits of HD virtual consultations, follow-ups & treatment, saving the time & cost involved in commuting to healthcare centers. Meanwhile, caregivers utilize telemedicine provisions to enhance patient care delivery to an extended number of patients with virtual meetings & reduce long waiting lines that, help provide more personalized treatment.
Intelligent Automation: Digital acceleration is helping the healthcare industry reinvent its processes & delivery of services. All rule-based tasks like patient scheduling & registration, patient bed flow management, patient communication, healthcare inventory management, insurance pre-authorization, and regulatory compliance are automated. Also, the patient experience is improved with a self-service portal where an AI-assisted chatbot supports the resolution of common queries, & delivers prompt solutions. Automation is critical in minimizing burnout of doctors and nurses and frees up their time to focus on the human touch in patient care
Remote Patient Monitoring: Intelligent Automation enables businesses to leverage the data from wearable devices & sensors that transmit data to healthcare providers & help them make informed decisions in real-time. Any urgency in treatment is addressed immediately, providing better healthcare to patients, minimizing chances of hospitalization, and patients don’t have to bear the costly expenditures. All this is possible with an integrated healthcare ecosystem with real-time patient monitoring, HD virtual consultations, connected ambulances, personal emergency response systems & much more with the IoMT devices & 5G connectivity, giving complete access to real-time patient data to healthcare professionals.
IoMT Devices & Health Apps & Mobile Apps: Many IoMT devices like consumer-grade wearables, smart pills, RPM devices, PERS, point-of-care-devices & kiosks, in-clinic monitors, in-hospital devices are connected with high-speed 5G to provide real-time health data to create more connected healthcare ecosystem. Many dedicated health apps enable patients to track their vitals & monitor their health. These apps support trackers, reminders & other health-related key information that enable users to stay on top of their key health parameters. Again the data from these apps are pulled in real-time into centralized systems to identify patterns and provide personalized care.
AR/VR: AR/VR technology is also changing the healthcare industry by taking patient care & medical training to the next level. The immersive technology enables healthcare providers to utilize it for patient education and medical training, allowing the patients to engage in pain management therapy to leverage better healthcare services.
How Healthcare Technology is Beneficial for Healthcare Centers & Patients
Clinical Decision Support: As technology permeates healthcare, clinical decision support upgrades healthcare to newer heights. Integrated with EHR/EMR, CDS provides evidence-based information to healthcare providers that help them make data-backed decision-making. The AI-enabled case-based reasoning employs AI and ML to bring out similar use cases, patient data & medical literature that enables healthcare providers to get support in clinical decision-making for diagnosis. There is an opportunity to leverage harmonized clinical & drug information with integration & standardization of clinical & drug data throughout the healthcare organization. It helps to ensure that diagnosis, medical procedures & treatments are adequately aligned with standard protocols supporting patient safety, & interoperability between existing systems and streamlined operations.
Data Analytics: Healthcare organizations deal with humongous data spread across existing systems like EHR, LIMS, HMS & Insurance & there is a need to consolidate the data to ensure accuracy. The data lake is a central repository for all the healthcare data breaking down siloes, improving cross-functional analysis & faster decision-making. The data analytics is done via AL & ML within the data lake to understand patterns & trends & correlations in data. The data is presented through visualizations via dashboards to track KPIs & understand the operational effectiveness & patient care delivery with real-time insights.
Patient Engagement: There is a focus on bringing patient engagement to the top of healthcare delivery by leveraging telehealth for handling all consultations. Patients can be remotely monitored via wearable technology. There is the provision of at-home tests for diagnosis & prescription delivery that supports patient care with a third-party prescription pick-up that handles the delivery part without any hassle on the part of the patient. Similarly, Medicine 2.0 includes web 2.0 technologies and semantic web & virtual reality approaches to facilitate social networking, participation, apo-medication & openness & collaboration between users. All these factors promote better healthcare systems.
Improved operational efficiency: With the benefits of AI-enabled technologies in the healthcare industry, both healthcare givers & patients have a win-win situation. The automated workflows optimize all administrative & regulatory compliance tasks. Better utilization of resources leads to optimal workforce usage; the processes are faster, costs are reduced & improved patient care is delivered, resulting in better outcomes. Overall, operational excellence is attained with streamlined processes & IoMT devices & interconnected healthcare ecosystem.
Improved healthcare delivery: AI-driven care-assistive apps empower the remote screening of diagnosis needs of the patients. In addition, AI-powered chatbots help patients to schedule appointments, & there is better communication between patients & caregivers. The real-time, virtual diagnosis of patients is supported by AR/VR, which improves healthcare delivery. The patients have a better experience & they prefer to continue their treatment with the healthcare facility.
Enhanced Data Security: Enhanced cybersecurity risks for healthcare data can be countered by optimizing technology partners’ capabilities. As healthcare facilities need to maintain data privacy to ensure their systems are fully secured in accordance with industry standards, they seek technical support from experts. For example, The Mount Sinai Health System has associated with Sandbox AQ, an enterprise (SaaS) company that optimizes quantum technology and AI to protect patient records through advanced encryption technology.
The healthcare industry is progressing ahead with technology that ensures healthcare delivery is personalized and predictive with a smooth patient experience. Healthcare providers need to modernize their existing systems to leverage the potential of advanced technologies into their day-to-day operations. Trigent supports a robust technical framework for enabling digital frontends that bring seamless access to legacy systems, along with supporting web & mobile app development, app modernization, legacy migration, building APIs, connectors for EHR integration, Virtual Document Management & Zero-Trust for Data Security & much more. We support a secure, customized & future-proof healthcare ecosystem to ensure resilient & high-quality healthcare systems that are maintained for personalized healthcare & improved patient outcomes.