The New Digital Healthcare Wave - by Josefina Romano
It is well known that technology evolves and changes the way we do things in all aspects of life. It can make our lives more convenient, easier, and even safer. That is why it is no surprise that patients are inching towards a more digitized healthcare experience, including virtual doctor consultations, using mobile apps to track their health status and receiving real time data at their fingertips. The new wave of the digitization of healthcare is expected to change the way that patients and healthcare providers expect to receive and provide patient care.
Empowering the Patient
With new and easier access to healthcare solutions and data, patients can feel more empowered and be more involved in the choices that affect their health. By having more communication options with their healthcare providers via online chat, text, video call they can easily connect and obtain the answers and solutions they seek. New consumer tools like smart watches and smart scales also allow patients to have real-time data of their health status. Most notably, the FDA recently cleared the first medical device accessory to detect abnormal heart rhythm that can link data with your Apple watch. Empowering the patient with the right tools and data allows them to feel more involved and be more in control of their health – providing them with more opportunities to adjust their behaviors and habits to live healthier lives.
Connecting with Healthcare Providers
New technologies allow for more connections with healthcare providers. This can mean less backed-up schedules, open availability for patients and increased productivity. According to Forbes, having an open-ended connection with patients can lead to a “more accurate and timelier identification of diseases that will enhance treatment and reduce waste.” Although patients are learning to transition to a more virtual and remote primary healthcare experience, human interaction will remain a key factor in the patient experience. Even if the interactions and connections are made digitally, patients still expect a knowledgeable and caring expert to help them through their needs. Empathy, caring, and human interaction are things that technology may never be able to replace.