2020 has been a serious year in terms of healthcare. From a global pandemic to the need of managing everything remotely, it was also the year of adaptation and reformation. With continuous and dedicated efforts in healthcare innovation new ways of improved health systems, policies, products, services, technologies, and delivery methods came to light. One such remarkable reform was telemedicine – an effective medium of healthcare delivery. And with so many innovations in the digital industry, we can expect healthcare to transform our everyday lives for the better.
Digital healthcare trends for 2021 and beyond
Here are a few trends that will continue to make waves in the healthcare industry, in 2021 and beyond.
1. Virtual reality and virtual care
A few years ago, VR was seen as a trend for just video games and entertainment. But today it is something that is being incorporated in much more than gaming. In healthcare, VR technology is proving to be highly effective in post-surgery care and chronic pain treatment.
Furthermore, virtual care is the need of the hour. For patients with conditions such as chronic pain, autism, lazy eye, etc., who are unable to visit the hospitals, video check-ups, and virtual therapies are the best way of treatment.
2. IoT in healthcare
Over the years, medical professionals had been facing problems in monitoring patients’ health regularly in order to make recommendations. Thanks to the internet of things (IoT), remote monitoring in the healthcare sector has become a savior. IoT can be embedded in wearables or home monitoring equipment which will allow the doctors to monitor the patients in an effective way.
3. AI for early diagnosis
AI has been one of the key players in the healthcare industry. In fact, the AI-powered healthcare tools market is projected to exceed $34 billion by 2025. This is evidence enough that the healthcare industry will be benefiting from the power of AI in the coming years. Some of the areas where AI will be most helpful in healthcare include, medical imaging, genomics, precision medicine, drug discovery, etc.
4. Blockchain in healthcare
Blockchain technology is yet again another key player that can transform healthcare for good. According to the experts, Blockchain can be really effective in healthcare data sharing that will ultimately enable an industry-wide shift to value-based care. In fact, according to reports Blockchain in the healthcare industry is expected to reach $890.5 million by 2023. The main role of this technology will be to ensure the accuracy and safety of electronic health records. Many big medical and pharmaceutical companies have already started to invest in blockchain technology. Surely it will be the next big thing in healthcare.
5. Wearable medical devices
Wearable technology has been quite popular for some time now. In healthcare, its usage is quite evident. Remote patient monitoring is one of the main areas where this technology can be fully leveraged. Besides that, it can also be used in the prevention of diseases and disease management. Patients recovering from chronic conditions such as cancer, obstructive pulmonary disease, heart strokes, etc need to be supervised at all times. They can utilize the advantage of wearable tech. It is a great way of decreasing patient-doctor distance in case of deadly diseases. According to Swiss firm Soreon Research, 1.3 million lives were saved by wearables by 2020. This is enough evidence for the role that smart wearable technology will play in healthcare in the future.
Healthcare is an important aspect of our lives, especially in modern times. With the transformation of modern technology and incorporation of the above-mentioned trends, healthcare can be completely transformed as well.