The medical industry is constantly evolving. If you are a medical professional, be sure to keep an eye on these three current medical trends.
General body health is a priority goal for each and every person and thus the quest for advancement in the healthcare sector. Improving health outcomes has been a driving force behind many medical trends. The healthcare landscape is changing drastically, and this creates an urgent emphasis on enhancing the quality of patient care and decreasing general costs, mainly within hospitals.
Following the recent settlement of the legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in the US, there are going to be some major changes in the healthcare industry. Many institutions are now looking for ways they can be able to improve within the healthcare landscape and they want to reach a new level of accuracy, proficiency, and patient care/safety. The combination of the marketplace as well as regulatory forces like consolidation trends, hospital productivity, fluctuating federal reimbursement policies, and ever-changing ownership patterns, form an important necessity for identifying other ways of producing quality and reducing costs. Today’s healthcare landscape has many uncertainties and this has made it hard for anyone to predict what its future holds. However, pharmacy is an aspect that will play a major role in shaping the changing healthcare landscape. Some of the things you should watch for in the changing healthcare sector include:
Nowadays, technology has made the world evolve at a higher pace and healthcare is one of the industries that has benefited. Today, high tech is being used to improve healthcare analysis as well as diagnosis. Also, digital and remote pharmacy solutions are now offered by savvy plan sponsors as an approach to virtualizing pharmacy and reaching patients where they are. Some of the services they have provided include remote monitoring, home delivery, telehealth, mobile applications, and much more. Telemedicine software has already been introduced, but telehealth is still being developed, and soon it will be implemented. There are several laws and regulations that are being created and others are changed so that telehealth technology can be spread worldwide. According to statistics, about 65% of nurses, physicians, and other healthcare experts are using telehealth or are planning to use it in the future. The reason why high technology is expected to bring changes in the healthcare landscape is that:
- It will increase the availability and accessibility of services: Technology will make services more available, and this means that more patients will be treated. This will be beneficial to patients with disabilities or elderly people as they won’t need to move from one place to another just because they want to see a doctor. People living in rural areas will also easily get answers to any questionable side effects and be treated. Through technology, the number of patients will reduce since most of them will be treated where they are.
- The total quality of care will improve: The best thing about high healthcare technology is that it will improve the quality of care because doctors will have more available time. The ease and efficiency of telehealth services will make the level of healthcare go up. There are several people who have used telemedicine services and most of them have said that the quality of care is higher than or similar to the in-person visit.
- It will reduce costs: Advancements in technology in the healthcare landscape will help lower the overall cost of the entire industry. Because technology makes services easily available, more patients will be treated in a well-organized and efficient manner that will eventually reduce costs. According to research, if US corporations use telemedicine then it could possibly supply more than 5.5 billion a year in healthcare savings.
In the future, it is expected that there will be the use of robotics in surgery as this will highly reduce complications. The accuracy and efficiency of technology in the healthcare landscape will help in simplifying and reducing a lot of problems.
Many health experts agree that healthcare industries will not look the way it is today and this is mainly because most of them will shift their focus to prevention and treatment, to population health, to low-cost approaches, to more personalized care, etc. This will force practitioners to develop different approaches that can help them provide unique services that can be of great value to their customers. There are many physicians that usually work with very sick patients and they have specialized in certain types of patients, disease types, or techniques of treatment. In the near future, there will be social workers, nutritionists, exercise psychologists, care coordinators, physical therapists, health coaches, and much more who will be making sure that people suffering from chronic disorders manage their risk factors and the healthy continue staying healthy.
There will be more care coordinators who will be trained to help patients in self-management to prescribed treatments. Physicians or nurses will be working under close supervision and tablets will be used as a form of communication between them and their supervisors during patient encounters. The assistants can be trained in 4-6 weeks to work with patients who have been diagnosed with a specific disease in EDs, hospitals, home visits, or even over the phone. Today, patients usually visit the hospital every 3-5 months if they have a serious disease and see a doctor for about 20 minutes. In the future, we expect clinical aides to work with such patients, and this eliminates the need to see a doctor every 5 months. This is expected to happen in the future, but some institutions have already started practicing it and they have found it is effective and convenient.
Fewer People in Hospitals
Due to technology and a growing workforce in the healthcare industry, there will be fewer people in hospitals. Patients will be given immediate answers wherever they are and they will find it easier to just stay home and get instructions from a doctor through a mobile app, phone call, etc. Everything will be readily available, thus, people won’t see the need to book an appointment with their doctor, take time off from work, and then go to the hospital.
Insurance companies have already implemented the necessary changes so that high-cost or high-risk patients can stay out of the hospitals. This measure will affect hospitals and patients but will be helpful to insurance companies since they will be saving money. Managers have already been hired to monitor patients who are considered to be high-cost and make sure they maintain a healthy lifestyle so that they won’t end up in hospitals. The high-tech and growing workforce will keep people healthy and help them stay out of hospitals; this is beneficial to patients but what about the nurses, doctors as well as support staff in hospitals? This means that some of them might lack jobs, or few people will want to be doctors or nurses.
As you can see, the healthcare system is already in the middle of experiencing some dramatic changes. As these current healthcare trends continue, expect to see new technologies, new structures, and reduced costs over time. In a world where healthcare is one of our most important sectors, having a healthcare system that can evolve will continue to be very important.
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