Technology in healthcare
Medical technology, "MedTech" encompasses a wide range of healthcare products and is used to treat diseases and medical conditions affecting humans. Recent advances in medical technology have also focused on cost reduction. Not only has technology changed experiences for patients and their families, but it's also had a huge impact on medical processes and the practices of healthcare professionals.
The Digitalization of Health Records
The introduction of Electronic Health Records (EHRs) in replacing paper records has been a game changer for many allied healthcare professionals.
Nurses and technicians are now responsible for inputting patient data such as vital signs, weight, test results, etc. into a central, digitized system. On the administration side of things, medical billers and coders use EHRs for scheduling appointments, updating patient records with diagnostic codes, and submitting medical claims.
Enhanced Patient Care
EHR can automatically alert the treating physician to potential issues, such as allergies or intolerances to certain medicines. EHRs can be accessed in any medical facility, which is extremely useful for doctors to access their medical history. This is especially important if the patient is unconscious. Additionally, a central and standardized system throughout the entire healthcare industry can identify a viral or bacterial infection quickly. This can give insights into how widespread an outbreak is, enabling preventative measures to be put in place much more quickly.
Ease of Workflow
Medical billers and coders are perhaps most impacted by EHRs, as the number of medical codes recently jumped. Despite this huge jump, the introduction of EHRs has made a life for medical billers and coders much easier.
Entering data into a computerized system is much less time-consuming than paper-based methods. It also reduces the risk of errors in patient data and financial details. Accessing patient records digitally can be done in an instant and viewed via portable devices, increasing efficiency, and productivity.
Big Data and The Cloud
As an industry dealing with the public, healthcare naturally collects and stores huge amounts of data. When analyzed by data experts, this information has multiple benefits, such as:
*Reducing healthcare costs
*Avoiding preventable deaths
*Improving the quality of life
*Reducing healthcare wastage
*Improving efficiency and quality of care
*Developing new drugs and treatments
With the shift to EHRs (and the fact that even one research study can amount to 100 terabytes of data), healthcare facilities need to have expandable, cost-effective, and safe storage solutions. This is where The Cloud comes in.
The Cloud is an invaluable tool for medical research, as well as for sharing medical information. In a survey of 105 healthcare industry IT professionals, 59% said they were using/planning to use the cloud for data analysis, and more than 75% for health information exchange. This new ability to share big data easily has helped lead to the development of life-saving drugs.
The main concern rising from Cloud computing technology and increased mobile use is security and data protection.
Information and Communication Technology
Approximately 270 million Americans own a mobile phone and even more are connected online. As with any industry, healthcare has needed to transform its communication processes to connect with people wherever they are.
Email, Smartphone, webcam, telemedicine, and telemonitoring systems are all currently being used to share information. They serve many purposes, such as diagnostics, management, and support.
What Are The Benefits of Telemedicine?
‘Telehealth' is improving allied healthcare jobs, including some of the such as medical assistants. The implementation of these telemedicine options means less crowded waiting rooms and easing the pressure on front desk teams.
Other benefits include:
*Shorter waiting times for patients
*Improved access for rural areas
*Improved efficiency, leading to saving
The Advantages of Using Mobile Equipment
A smartphone allows practitioners to complete tasks in remote locations. For example, a physician can use their Smartphone or tablet to access a patient's EHR, review medical histories, send follow-up emails, and even complete prescriptions.
Improved communication aids the role of medical billers, allowing them to send text message alerts about payment schedules and outstanding bills. Mobile communication can also cut down on snail mail, paper use, and time spent on phone calls.
Mobile App Technology in the Medical Field
There's an app for almost everything these days, and healthcare apps are constantly being developed for both healthcare professionals and patient use. In fact, healthcare apps are one of the fastest-growing markets in mobile application development. There are approximately 100,000 health apps current.Mobile health apps give professionals, administrators, and patients greater flexibility. They are an inexpensive way for facilities to provide more high-quality services, and – at the same time – are cheaper for patients to access.
Apps can assist with:
*Chronic care management
*Personal health records
*Fitness and weight-loss
Centralized Data Point
While having a central point for all data information may be extremely useful, over-dependence on the Cloud introduces the risk of important information being unavailable in emergencies. If everything you need is online (and there are connectivity or bandwidth problems), there could serious repercussions.