In this fast-paced world, with everyone striving for success and time being equated with money, often the health of a person takes a back seat. The proverb health is wealth is, more often than not, simply brushed under the carpet. However, with the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, people are becoming more cautious and conscious regarding their health. This can be seen as a positive byproduct of the pandemic.
The governments of various countries are working meritoriously to fight this virus. They are putting out measures of social distancing, shutting off almost all the non-essential sectors of the economy, placing limitations on movements of people. They are ensuring that the lockdown restrictions are strictly adhered to, by providing health advisories and guidelines to people at regular intervals. Most importantly they are undertaking measures to strengthen the health care system whose long drawn shortcomings are becoming vehemently apparent during this global virus outbreak.
The derelict condition of the primary health care system has worsened the situation that has arisen out of COVID 19. With almost all countries facing the brunt of this outbreak, questions have been put forward about the vitality of the present healthcare systems. Appeals have been made to bring about crucial changes in the same with greater emphasis placed on undertaking innovations. Therefore, the attempt of this article would be to understand the importance of innovations with software product development to ensure the continued relevance of the primary healthcare system, in the face of growing demands, not only in the COVID era but also in the post COVID world space.
What Is Primary Care?
Before directly diving any further, let us first try to understand what constitutes primary care and its underlying importance. Primary care is the first point of contact between a patient and the healthcare system that provides the concerned individuals all the information and resources required to guarantee optimal health outcomes. Thus making the need to maintain its robustness all the more essential in any society or country.
The primary health care system is responsible for providing whole-person care for health issues and requirements throughout one’s lifespan. It is not limited to the treatment of just a few specific diseases. It ensures that people receive comprehensive care, which includes prevention and treatment, rehabilitation, and palliative care and making its services feasible to people’s everyday environment.
Since the past few years, there has been a growing recognition that a strong healthcare system is vital for the attainment of sustainable development and holds the key for building the future we all dream about and deserve. Robust healthcare systems lower the health costs, improves the overall population health, ensures higher patient satisfaction, lowers the unnecessary hospital admissions, and leads to a greater overall socioeconomic equity.
However, it is important to note that the only way any healthcare system can cope up with the growing risks posed by new diseases is by ensuring that there are timely innovations. Also, they have to ensure that new technologies are being incorporated at frequent intervals to the existing healthcare regimes.
Innovation And The Healthcare
Innovation is defined as an invention or development or experimentation of new technologies, services, processes, products, systems, etc. It is mostly regarded as positive and is, undoubtedly, one of the most important variables for progress, irrespective of the field it is undertaken in. It enables continuous improvement, it helps in responding to new demands, makes functioning more efficient, so on and so forth. Undeniably, innovation plays a very crucial role in the health care systems too.
Over the last few decades, healthcare has seen unprecedented growth in innovations which has led to longer life expectancies and has helped improve the overall quality of life. To achieve better results, it is imperative that the sector adopts modern technologies like wearable app development. Many new technologies coupled with improved diagnosis and better therapeutic options have helped in finding cures to a number of diseases. It has addressed people’s complex and different needs side by side throughout the world.
Innovations have helped fight, once incurable diseases like Typhoid, tuberculosis, hepatitis, malaria, chickenpox, Ebola, HIV/AIDS, Ebola, etc from time and again. Evidently, Constant innovation is the only way to face challenges involving the improvement in the quality of facilities and increasing their efficiency.
However, there still exists the need for better programs that can add to enhanced diagnosis, treatment, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, surgical procedures, etc. Since the past few years, the understaffing of hospitals and in healthcare IT systems in general, combined with an increase in the demand for medical benefits and facilities, has created nothing sort of a crisis. Keeping all these factors in mind now may be the best time to consider newer and efficient approaches to ensure better health care delivery systems.
The innovations In Healthcare
In order to grasp the importance of innovations in health care systems in its totality, discussed below are some of the important innovations.
Information is the most vital component in the health care systems. Patient details, health conditions, diagnostic reports, prescriptive data are just a few examples of them. Taking into consideration, the human factor is not an easy task to maintain such huge amounts of data with quality and accuracy.
However, the coming of Enterprise Mobility has not only changed the communication process between the doctor and the patient but has also enabled the remote monitoring of patients. Some of the advantages of using Enterprise Mobility solutions are given below.
- Better Management Of Patient Records
With the patients’ records being saved in a more systematic way, it is easier for the doctors to access information about the patient during emergencies and also revises the information as required. Moreover, health records, prescriptions, lab reports, etc can be stored in a paperless way, thus helping the environment too.
- Examination Of The Patient
Nowadays, smartphones have a number of different applications that help in measuring heart rates, blood pressure, diabetes levels, and more, which in turn cuts the clinical decision making time by half.
- Remote Monitoring
Enterprise mobility solutions also help in reducing the number of unnecessary visits to the physician as the doctor can be easily contacted through the phone. Likewise, many patients are physically incapable of traveling for longer distances of travel at all. Such patients can be provided with health care facilities via remote patient care solutions.
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Electronic prescriptions have become increasingly popular among patients and physicians alike as it helps in eliminating ambiguities, errors, and duplication.
- Optimizes The Nursing Activity
It is not possible for a human to remember a ton of information without the risk of errors. An enterprise mobility solution simplifies their tedious jobs by keeping better track of the patients’ records and medications. It also helps in avoiding a mix up of medications of patients, alerts them about the time medications are to be given or tests to be conducted.
With the progress in software product development, new technologies have come up such as this one. Portal technology is a secure online website that gives patients 24-hour access to his/her health information. It keeps a tab about the doctor visits, information about the next scheduled appointments, lab results, etc. It also allows the patients to connect with the doctor and update him/her about recent developments, refill medications, consult in general, etc.
Online Medical Applications
The coming of many online medical applications has helped the patients to get their medicines delivered in the comfort of their homes. Some apps also provide for an online free consultation which is extremely useful for the treatment of low-risk diseases like cough and cold, headaches, etc. It has also helped in ensuring better connectivity between pharmaceutical stores and patients.
Piloted by an increase in the popularity of wearable devices, the market of wearable app development has tripled over the past four years. The device market is growing at a rate of 16.4% every year. Some of the examples are the wearable fitness trackers that are equipped with sensors that detect a person’s heart rate level that is synced with smartphones or smartwatches.
Some wearable application development companies have also developed smartwatches that have the ability to measure electrocardiograms or ECGs. Moreover, there are certain biosensor wearable devices that are nothing more than an adhesive patch that measures the heart rate, temperature, etc while moving around. Many smartphones also have an alert system that reminds the patients to take their medications on time and keeps a constant tab on their health
Progressive Web App
Progressive web apps are websites that work as an app without downloading the app. This means the users will have the same level of accessibility to information as someone who will have the app installed on the phone. Applications like mhealth, Medlife, Netmed, etc are a few examples of a Progressive web app. Such apps help in better working of the sites, faster loading time, and do not take up storage space, making it easier to be used across various devices, platforms, and operating systems. PWA development services can be taken to get these hi-tech apps developed.
A few studies suggest that telehealth is of extremely beneficial especially rural settings that do not have the same facilities or access to resources as the metropolitan cities do. For example, Indianapolis based health company, WellPoint, carried out a consultation program whereby patients can receive a full assessment through a video chat with the physician. This reduces the cost of traveling and also saves up on the cost of admitting staff and makes the entire process cost-efficient as well as effective.
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Pharmacogenomics is the study of how the genes of a particular individual respond to certain drugs. The concept of personalized medicine has changed the entire scenario of the health care industry. They did this by tailoring treatment plans to patients who are anticipating the onset of a particular disease by taking into consideration the genetic makeup of an individual. This makes the entire process of diagnosis more efficient and accurate. Pharmacogenomics can help save billions of dollars by preventing misdiagnosis, readmissions, and unnecessary costs.
The coming of the self-service kiosk has facilitated the processes of registration which can in turn help in staff savings. Moreover, such automated kiosks can also guide the patients with signing paper works and other registration requirements. However, it is to be noted that, despite such software product development advancements the human element is not to be undermined and there should be the availability of people in case someone needs their help.
3D Models To Shorten Surgeries
Detailed operations are usually risky as well as complicated, putting the patient at higher risk. In order to counter such risks to some extent, a number of hospitals are resorting to 3D operating model technology that allows a surgeon to practice complex operations beforehand. Practicing beforehand gives the advantage of already knowing what to do and also allows the surgeons to test innovative practices that reduce the risk later and also consumes less time when actually performing the operation.
Use Of Robots
Advanced robotics has opened a completely different trajectory for surgeries and treatments that were previously considered as dangerous and invasive. Heartland, for example, is a small robot that can perform heart surgeries. It is seen as a huge milestone and an equally great improvement over traditional heart surgeries as it is more precise, safe, and less risky.
Wrapping up, the point noted here is that innovation is a constant process. Better technology will improve what the healthcare system has to offer while at the same time revolutionizing the industry. The results of new and efficient applications with PWA APP development, enterprise mobility, sensor technology, robotics etc can forever change how patients are treated worldwide.
Even in today’s time, with the outbreak of SARS COVID 2, which is a completely new form of the disease, innovation is what awaits the invention of a vaccine. With new diseases coming up it is only becoming important for better integration between healthcare and technology to ensure the survival of the human species.