How is the digital revolution transforming healthcare?
Find out how digital advancements have revolutionised healthcare and enabled people who don’t want to or are unable to (for example in war torn countries) see a doctor, get vital diagnosis and treatment.
The cost of going to the doctor for an appointment is expensive. And sometimes, you may not feel comfortable with your doctor giving you a physical examination. But did you know that you can get healthcare advice without going through the hassle of visiting a doctor by using digital consultation?
In this article we will be discussing the advancement of digital health care and its benefits. It is important to remember that there are three main objectives of any medical treatment:
- To relieve symptoms
- To cure the underlying disease
- To prevent complications
Let’s look at each one in turn and how it’s been transformed by technology.
1) To relieve symptoms
Initially, digital consultation (DC) has been around for a while but recently has become very popular. It allows the patient to communicate with a specialist without the need for in-person visits. The specialist will look at information from previous tests and studies and other medical records.
To have this treatment, you will need to have your medical records already taken care of by your doctor. This is done because most doctors do not take new patients without having records from previous visits made available beforehand. Your doctor will also review any tests that you may have done and notes your symptoms from previous times that you saw him or her previously.
2) To cure the underlying disease
One of the driving forces behind digital health is the desire to tackle chronic disease. As our bodies change with time, many diseases become more complex and require different treatment approaches.
Technology is slowly catching up, and now the goal is for technology to be more than just a band-aid by helping solve the underlying disease. This article looks at how digital consultation can help with chronic conditions like diabetes, hypertension, COPD, epilepsy, or Parkinson’s Disease.
3) To prevent complications
A digital consultation allows people to stay in the comfort of their own homes and have online chats with a medical professional who are available 24/7, 365 days a year. This is an effective solution for people who can’t afford an appointment for any reason or cannot get to the doctor’s office because they live too far away from it.
In a real-time environment, the one-size-fits-all model will be replaced by a more personalized method. Doctors will be able to collect more information about their patients before they are even evaluated. Once they have all of the data available, they will figure out what kind of medical issues a patient is likely to experience later on down the road.
Today, healthcare is becoming more of a science than an art. Doctors can analyze huge amounts of data to offer personalized treatments for their patients. Using genetic databases, behavioral profiles, and epidemiological information, doctors can take medical care to a new level by providing individualized treatments optimized for each patient’s needs.
In the digital world of healthcare, the role of doctors will be more about maintaining the health of their patients instead of emergency treatment. Doctors in the digital age will offer a level of personalization and convenience that has been entirely impossible before.
Digital healthcare can also treat people with no access to a doctor
The advancement is of digital healthcare can also help treat the inconvenience of providing treatment to those who don’t have access to the doctor or medical welfare at all—for example, countries in war with low to no facilitation of healthcare.
With the use of a basic mobile phone, these people can get immediate help. Combined with telehealthcare advancements, this has enhanced how data is gathered and processed.
Another way to solve this problem is using digital healthcare services at home (or in any nearby place). Hospitals are moving towards care-at-home facilities. For instance, hospitals have started to provide remote monitoring services.
Patients at home can be monitored by gadgets and devices to collect data from their vitals and transmit it online for health professionals to access and analyze them. This solution guarantees minimal movement from the patient’s side that will help in preventing infections like bedsores.
Photo by Usman Yousaf