healthcare industry

The Impact of Digital Technologies on the Healthcare Industry

Just like any industry, the healthcare industry is being heavily influenced by digital transformation. Now, what does that mean? Well, it means that different technological tools and solutions are being used to improve patient care, patient experience, create new business models, service delivery, better communication, etc. It is not about just technology, rather it is about how and for exactly what purpose the technology can be implemented to assist the healthcare professionals to grow and elevate.   

The primary reason behind this digital transformation is to create more customer-centric services. And this improvement will be of great importance in healthcare as the treatment of every patient can be more customized and personalized, making it better for both the healthcare professionals and patients. 

What is digital transformation in healthcare?

When we say digital transformation in the healthcare industry, it is not only about the technologies that we are talking about, instead, it’s about the way to use these technologies, tools, and software to get the most out of it for providing better healthcare. Just like any industry that has been influenced by the digital transformation, the healthcare industry puts patients at the center which means that every ounce of effort will be made to improve the quality of the treatment, patient care, and the entire process to cure a specific health issue.  

This digital transformation has a range of advantages for everyone as the cutting-edge tools and technologies let us work more efficiently and effectively. Having said that, healthcare institutions and medical centers have to rebuild their business strategies and create more opportunities that come with digital transformation. 

The digital transformation in the healthcare industry 

The healthcare digital transformation could really turn things for the medical industry. The implementation of the right technological solutions could indeed bring a lot of positive changes and advantages, and some health problems could even be cured more effectively and much quicker. 

Some of the tech giants have already started implementing technologies in the healthcare industry and here are some of the classic examples.

Internet of Things (IoT): IoT-powered smart and connected solutions such as wearables, sensors, and smart health monitoring systems are being utilized to uncover the full potential growth of the healthcare industry. They would do this by enhancing the treatment via efficient health tracking. The exponentially increasing popularity of the Internet of Things (IoT) in the healthcare and medical industry has significantly lifted modern technologies which is the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT). Now, this IoMT is an ecosystem of smart devices which can easily communicate with each other in real-time for better results. This kind of communication could greatly reduce human errors and minimize decision-making delays.   

Cloud Computing: Cloud lets us protect patient information and make sure regulatory compliance while allowing healthcare professionals to deliver better technological care. You can talk to HIPAA software developers for more information on the same. This will spread the patient experience to the digital space. A range of public, private, and hybrid cloud platforms could assist in potentially getting better access to patients’ records.  

Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI-powered applications so far have assisted in boosting up the speed and accuracy level of healthcare diagnosis. Artificial Intelligence is utilized in the research and development of new healthcare products. In addition, it helps in automating repetitive activities of healthcare professionals such as regular paperwork, scheduling, and time-sheet to enhance efficiency and minimize costs. AI has also assisted doctors in analyzing the historical patient data to identify new insights for a quicker and better cure. 

Top benefits of digital transformation in the healthcare industry

  • Better health services for patients

Again, like any other industry that enters the digital transformation, healthcare is also patient-centered or patient-centric. The deployment of various modern tools and technologies will let the healthcare professionals make the treatment more personalized.   

  • Better analysis

The utilization of such tools and technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning gives opportunities to analyze data efficiently and much faster than the manual process. Also, it reduces the error rate, improving productivity. 

  • Better organization

Thanks to modern tools and technologies, all patient information now could be easily digitized. This allows fast access to the patient’s medical record which gives the doctors the ultimate chance to make quicker and better decisions to provide accurate treatment. Also, in case of emergencies, the wearable devices automatically alert both the patient and healthcare professionals, including the ambulance.  

  • Better time management

The deployment of various digital solutions into the healthcare industry will save a lot of time for everyone. For example, quicker access to patient records could lead to quicker treatment which could potentially save the patient’s life. 

A few challenges of digital transformation in the healthcare

Digital healthcare systems could use the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing, and big data to maintain an effortless digital connection with the patient. Now, these very systems are also heavily connected to various other digital solutions that assist healthcare professionals with real-time patient information. That being said, there are several challenges that the healthcare industry will or already facing due to the digital transformation.

  1. Better data security practices are needed to protect the patient data
  2. The integration of multiple smart devices running on multiple protocols increases the complexity level and could slow down the process of data exchange. 
  3. The immense amount of data that is stored in the cloud needs efficient memory and data management techniques.

Faisal Rafiq

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