The progress that medical science has presented in recent years is directly linked to technological advances in health. The applications of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data in the industry are numerous. From the electronic medical record to diagnosis, “smart” computers help give quicker and more accurate answers than a few years ago.
In an activity that requires total assertiveness, such as medicine, the automation of processes is fundamental for the correct extraction of information and indication of the best treatment or prevention. The innovations of medicine of the future include from digital processes to the use of robotics in surgeries and have already reached an exoskeleton that can help people with walking difficulties.
In spite of the great number of innovations that appear at all times, many applications are still in the test phase and others are restricted to reference health institutions in research and innovation. Therefore, in this article, we will show what tools can and should be applied by hospitals that want to modernize and improve their care and continue to be a reference in the care of their patients.
The main technological advances in health
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a key part of the evolution of the industry. With Machine Learning and connected devices, healthcare professionals have more support to provide more accurate and faster diagnostics even in remote locations.
In exams transmitted via telemedicine, for example, it is possible to send and receive images directly from the devices, all online. Already with the learning of machines, it is possible to do the sorting and put the urgencies in the first place of the analysis line.
Already a few years ago, electronic medical records have also helped healthcare professionals and patients share and manage information in real time. Technologies for remote monitoring are also true in many hospitals, shortening distances and assisting physicians and patients in treatment.
THE telemedicine is one of the great technological advances in health. It is a process of exchanging digital information to shorten distances – from diagnosis service. One of the strengths of its use is the provision of online reports.
Through telemedicine, tests such as Electrocardiogram (ECG) , Spirometry , Electroencephalogram , Visual acuity , Mammography and X ray , for example, can be done by hospitals from any region and sent in real time, via the internet, to teams of specialists, available to assist full time. It is possible to deliver reports on the same day or, in case of urgency, minutes after the exam.
The use of Artificial Intelligence in telemedicine is able to facilitate the screening of the exams and the accuracy of the reports: in evaluating its database, the computer can signal anomalies in the images and empower the physician to perform more and more precise diagnoses.
With telemedicine, there is reduction of costs and better utilization of internal medical teams. Doctors who previously were restricted to the activity of laundering tests, can already be relocated to the care of patients. They are quality gains in care, with more doctors available and exams being delivered quickly and efficiently.
This is a technology that has already been applied in the healthcare sector around the world. The electronic medical record stores digitally and gathers in a single place all the necessary information about the patient. Among them, the clinical history, medicines used and procedures performed.
Thus, at each visit, information on the patient’s health will always be available to health professionals. In some cases, the data is also accessible to the patient himself, so that he becomes aware of and empowers himself with regard to his own health. To facilitate the organization of these data and integrate them into hospital management, there are electronic medical record software that provides data such as the number of consultations performed, patient schedules, costs of outpatient procedures, among others.
In the United States, for example, data of the National Coordination of Technology in Health show that in 2014, 83% of doctors in the United States already used some type of electronic medical record. The information also shows that 8 out of 10 professionals use the system for the prescription of medicines, as well as annotations on the consultation, indication of allergies, sensitivities of patients and visualization of laboratory tests.
IoT and remote monitoring
The emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) has enabled a number of technological advances in health. By means of remotely connected devices it is possible to automatically gather a series of information about the patient’s status, which help in the diagnosis work and subsequent treatment or prevention.
With the help of IoT it is possible to measure indicators such as blood pressure, heart rate and body temperature at a distance. This data is sent to applications and analyzed by health professionals. With this, it is possible to avoid a series of complications due to lack of care, taking the necessary measures as soon as possible and considerably reducing unnecessary hospitalization rates.
You can use a simple app , for example, in which a diabetic patient sends information such as weight, activity level, heart rate and blood glucose level, among others. There are also so-called wearables , which are devices used as garments, connected to the internet, that transmit real-time updates on the patient’s health status. Today there are bracelets, necklaces or watches that automatically send a signal to the health team if any indicator fades from the control parameters. a report gives Tractica consultancy shows that the use of wearables will increase from 2.5 million to 97.6 million units per year by 2021.
As we have seen, technology has come to stay and the trend for the next few years is that its use will become increasingly common in the health world. Institutions that do not adapt to this new reality should lose space for the most innovative competitors.
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