The idea of wearable devices for medicine used to be a futuristic concept. Now it is commonplace. It’s hard these days to find someone who is not attuned to wearing an iWatch or Fitbit to monitor their heart rate and spent calories as well as the number of steps taken throughout the day.
An array of vital statistics are collected so health professionals can monitor
wellness or chronic conditions. Daily routines can be maintained while collecting data for the doctor. Devices can be worn to send information such as pulse, blood pressure, sugar levels, and heart rate.
This is useful both for individuals dealing with chronic conditions such as diabetes or those who experience sporadic conditions like seizures, trauma cases or long-term home healthcare .
Technology in medicine now covers a myriad of input and output devices, enabling patients and doctors to discuss findings and collaborate about treatment. Video conferencing as in Telehealth, is the most prominent use of communication these days as it allows both visual and audible symptoms to be examined remotely. Online portals allow patients to get results, schedule appointments or learn more about their diagnosis and treatment options.
Data collected from multiple locations globally can be useful in research and development to
understand specific ailments or conditions and their potential treatments.
Telehealth applications enable professionals, institutions, and government agencies to collaborate data for improvement and unifying healthcare practices.
Healthcare professionals can also take advantage of telemedicine to increase their productivity. Patients love it because they can converse with the medical community on their own terms when it is convenient for them, even when the traditional office is closed.
Doctors can care for patients and check the progress of treatments and conditions without traveling to them. A review of real-time data logs takes less time to determine whether treatment is successful or another option should be offered. Online access and
transfer of patient information between professionals allows for a more consistent and reliable treatment.
The Cost Benefit
Hospitals and medical facilities can reduce the bottom line for healthcare and care for more patients as they adopt telemedicine technologies. Smaller institutions can expand services provided by partnering with larger institutions.
Data from remote monitoring and recording can protect institutions and professionals from frivolous malpractice suits and contribute to improving the quality of services.
Medical students may increase their understanding with technology to improve healthcare services and prepare to implement telemedicine practices effectively.
Data from telemedicine devices can be used to see where improvements can be made and to
determine the efficiency of institutions in terms of care and basic services.
Outbreaks of viruses or epidemics in specific areas can be monitored as data collected from telemedicine devices is amassed and evaluated to identify hot spots. Telemedicine capabilities can enable effective collaboration between healthcare professionals and care management.
Patients are more informed about their healthcare options than ever before because of
technology. The adoption of technology in healthcare services will bring down overall costs for providing quality services, improve patient compliance and increase patient satisfaction.
Eighty-four percent of respondents, feel that the technology with telemedicine devices can now
deliver similar outcomes for patients treated at a hospital or medical office.
A mere 13% feel that technology is not evolved sufficiently yet.
“Presence of clinical staff for physical intervention can’t be overlooked. However telemedicine is the next best thing to being physically present” said one respondent. Another argued that “data that they [telemedicine devices] provide enhances communication, to the effect that meeting over video or communicating over email becomes much more beneficial.”
What has been your experience with patient portals and telemedicine? Share it in the comment box below for our community. Let’s get a discussion going!