How technology will transform healthcare after the coronavirus pandemic
A significant learning from our current healthcare crisis is to be prepared for a world after the COVID-19 pandemic. Technology is showing us how.
In a perfectly healthy environment, the future of our healthcare system would have included virtual reality, 3D printing and prosthetics, augmented reality, and even robotic healthcare workers.
While there’s no denying the fact that the industry will eventually pick up on these lines and build a successful plan, our current situation demands a different perspective.
A significant learning from our current healthcare situation is to be prepared for a world after the COVID-19 pandemic. Medical experts and senior scientists are already looking at major changes that are guaranteed to become healthcare and technology’s future — from the sudden interest in telemedicine, to administrative movements affecting human services billing and the use of geo-location to follow traces.
Healthcare frameworks are getting comfortable with this world and finding the old ways of operating, primarily regular visits to clinics, obsolete and conflicted in relation to the situation they are trying to control.
Amid all this are some practices that people are gradually getting used to and are now becoming the norm in the industry:
Frontline healthcare workers have been on their toes ever since the coronavirus outbreak surfaced. Calls from patients keen to talk to primary care physicians about potential symptoms shot up. Many healthcare systems are moving to self-triaging mobile apps to assist their population with checking for symptoms before requesting time with a specialist.
For instance, an application in the UK called the C-19 COVID Symptom Tracker is investigating the development of medical conditions by following patterns and asking individuals to self-report side effects to accumulate more such information.
In India, Aarogya Setu, a versatile mobile application, has been created by the health ministry to assist residents with zeroing in on their chances of getting the infection.
Social distancing and self-quarantine have forced people to switch from visiting their doctors’ clinics to consulting them online. Tele-assessment and e-medicine empowers even those healthcare workers who were isolated to work from their own homes, fundamentally expanding their security and support system to react to an emergency of this size.
At the point when patients are analysed in their own homes, specialists and healthcare systems will have the option to triage and screen a lot bigger number of patients than they could personally.
Anand Giridharadas, an American writer and a former columnist at The New York Times said, “Coronavirus makes clear what has been true all along. Your health is as safe as that of the worst-insured, worst-cared-for person in your society. It will be decided by the height of the floor, not the ceiling.”
From now onwards, there will be a renewed and re-positioned investment made by governments across the globe in their healthcare systems.
These progressions are the beginning of a new future. The COVID-19 pandemic, which is probably not going to disappear anytime soon, is also an awakening for healthcare systems.
It is time we prepare ourselves with well-equipped AI, VR, and AR technologies to improve and customise treatments of individuals.
In other words, the dependence on healthcare technological solutions will keep on increasing at a pace and scale we have not seen so far. This has numerous potential outcomes. From diagnosing illness at home to the customised care of patients post release from hospitals and giving advice/reminders over video conferencing, everything will change.
This, along with better administration and a progressively efficient and innovatively empowered workforce, will lead to be better future.
The coronavirus pandemic is a call from the future for to administrations across the globe to not cut down on R&D spending on infectious diseases. Before COVID-19, we have seen other epidemics such as Avian Flu, SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome), Ebola, Nipah, and so many more.
Healthcare must be ready with technological advances to tackle bacterial infections that are now resistant to antibiotics and can cause disruptions worldwide.
Edited by Teja Lele
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)