Technology can help make healthcare far more accessible – ET HealthWorld

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You can try developing an AI chatbot or mobile app that uses natural language processing and machine learning algorithms to provide instant medical advice and support, helping users make informed healthcare decisions.


You can try to develop an AI chatbot or mobile app that uses natural language processing and machine learning algorithms to provide instant medical advice and support, helping users make informed healthcare decisions.

by Venky Ananth

Both complex and far-reaching, health care it has its share of challenges and bottlenecks that affect quality and accessibility for those who need it. The advent of digital technology It has helped the sector to reinvent itself. From reinventing patient visits to enabling virtual surgeries and facilitating access to health caretechnology is helping healthcare providers scale operations while delivering personalized solutions with significant added value.

Recent advances in technology have also helped healthcare providers navigate various uncertainties experienced during the pandemic, providing a great opportunity to test its usability and understand the potential for scale. Hospitals set up virtual ICUs so doctors could digitally monitor COVID-19 patients without having to visit them in person each time. telemedicinewhich took a big step in times of pandemic as an alternative to face-to-face visits, has become common during preoperative procedures.

Addressing bottlenecks in healthcare
Despite the ongoing digital revolution, has healthcare become more accessible, especially for the rural population and those in remote locations? The short answer is no, not completely.
according to a survey 2022 As regards the quality of accessible healthcare in selected European countries, more than 20% of respondents in countries such as Spain, Ireland, Turkey, Hungary and Poland rated the quality of healthcare they have access to in their country as poor/ Very bad.

However, there are reasons to be optimistic. Emerging technologies have the potential to decongest traditional bottlenecks (meeting diverse patient needs and preferences, affordability and availability of services) to unlock real value by using innovative approaches to deliver these services.

An important question facing health care providers is: How to address affordability, access to transportation to get to medical centers, and high-quality, specialized care from physicians? These are some of the long-standing barriers to healthcare accessibility that highlight the digital divide between urban and rural populations.

Next-generation technology can help bridge this gap. For example, Augmented reality (RA) and Virtual reality (VR) can be the game changers that unlock access to specialized care for everyone. If a patient in a remote location needs orthopedic care, virtual reality can facilitate virtual interventions by an orthopedic surgeon located elsewhere to boost the care regimen as needed.

Health professionals can use digital platforms to keep in touch with patients who require frequent/constant supervision, without the need to be physically present. For example, oncology patients can use the platform to immediately report any side effects or updates related to ongoing therapy.

Cloud that integrates data and technology to improve results
The role of communications in health care cannot be ignored. As care coordination in modern healthcare facilities becomes increasingly complex, seamless communication can equip healthcare workers to handle emergencies, surges in requirements and remotely monitor patients.

While providers can choose the technology and data to support their activities, available data must be integrated with technology to enable a seamless channel of communication. This need is united by the cloud.

Cloud scalability is critical as healthcare providers can embrace new technologies and integrate them with data to deliver real-time insights to clinicians, enabling value-based care.

The future of healthcare through technology
Despite the abundance of digital tools and solutions in healthcare, there are inherent challenges to uncompromising acceptance on the ground. While high-tech healthcare systems have been around for years, many are not easy to use. They need to be simplified to drive engagement with target users: medical staff and patients. Nor has it been easy to convince medical staff to come on board. While remote patient monitoring and digital technologies offer many benefits and help address physician burnout, medical staff must be empowered to understand and implement the solution effectively.

The new wave of digital solutions in healthcare is focused on usability for the medical and user communities. Having digital health tools in place will not improve results. Patients need to use them effectively just like doctors in their practice. Therefore, these platforms and tools must be simple and comfortable to use. For example, including audio descriptions or user guides will help non-tech-savvy patients easily onboard and routinely use the app to access healthcare remotely.

With the use of advanced tools and connected devices, protecting sensitive patient information is another major concern, which means ensuring proper security encryptions.

These persistent pain points point to the need for innovation in healthcare technology if technology interventions are to make sense. This will help improve the effectiveness of systems, processes, and care delivery, while making quality healthcare accessible and available to all.

Venky AnanthSenior Vice President and Global Head of Healthcare, Infosys

(DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely those of the author and are not necessarily endorsed by ETHealthworld. shall not be liable for any damage caused to any person or organization directly or indirectly.)


  • Updated On May 30, 2023 at 05:26 AM IST
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  • Posted on May 30, 2023 at 05:26 am IST
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  • 4 min read
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