After two long pandemic years, digital transformation in healthcare is an undeniable necessity for our global community. During the past couple of Covid waves, medtech solutions got the chance to prove their effectiveness, and they did. Today, we can no longer imagine a world without technologies and the healthcare industry makes no exception. From patient-centric medical platforms and digital health advisors to IoMT wearables or AI-driven software solutions supporting the decision-making process of healthcare providers – digital solutions for healthcare are here to stay and disrupt the sector.
Working in a bespoke software development company building IT healthcare solutions, I know that technology has become one of the most vital elements for business success. With the ultimate goal of driving a meaningful and sustainable digital transformation in healthcare, many existing market players seek opportunities to partner up with experienced software development vendors to help them readapt to the constantly changing market demands. The same is also valid for newly emerging businesses that challenge and disrupt traditional healthcare delivery models and introduce digitalisation of services in a new and more efficient way.
Without further ado, let’s explore the most promising IT healthcare solutions in 2022.
IoMT Wearable Devices
In today’s world, the Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data have entered the healthcare sector. All eyes are on newly emerging IoMT (Internet of Medical Things) wearable devices such as sensor-equipped on-body trackers or in-home medical devices that promise to help make healthcare more efficient, faster, and patient-centric. One of the many pandemic lessons healthcare experts learned was that now, more than ever, we need to be able to give the best response to any situation and even save lives.
As a quick reference, according to GlobeNewswire the global IoMT market is estimated to reach $187.60 billion in the next six years with a really high compound annual growth rate of 29.5%. This future prognosis reflects the rising interest in interconnected technology in healthcare and IoMT wearable devices. Many experts consider that the average medical expense will decrease once IoMT devices become more widely used. Besides, the fast expansion in area coverage of 5G technology and its high-speed network allow IoMT devices to send real-time data to health professionals to assess, analyse and make treatment adjustments.
Patient-Centred Healthcare Apps
Covid-19 has certainly raised our collective awareness of our personal health and how our own actions have a chain reaction. While many people now return to their pre-pandemic everyday lives, others need to continue being more cautious because of higher risk factors. As a result, market demands towards patient-centred healthcare apps have surged during the past two years, and many healthcare providers have invested in creating IT healthcare solutions that revolve entirely around the patients’ needs. In fact, the global personalised medicine market in 2020 was estimated to be worth $493.1 billion and is expected to rise up to $828 by 2028.
Alongside driving the digital transformation in healthcare, patient-centred healthcare apps have numerous use cases such as access to personal EHR with their medical history, tracking vitals, monitoring health journey while recovering, or on-demand contact with medical professionals. 2022 healthcare trends show that advanced data analytics, Artificial Intelligence and telemedicine will help navigate digital healthcare. In the not so distant future, predictions also claim that we could enjoy personalised medicine designed to fit each patient’s unique needs while also contributing to more cost efficiency and fewer side effects.
Augmented Reality is Entering Medicine
In 2022, Augmented Reality is so much more than just devices that serve the entertainment industry. In essence, Augmented Reality (AR) can influence much of the existing medtech solutions, adding supplementary layers of information to the real world and opening a whole new world on new use cases in healthcare. For instance, AR is a technology that can help in medical education, during physical therapy and recovery. Pharma companies can also benefit from AR by showcasing demos of how a new drug work in the body.
Another use case of augmented reality is in surgery. Nowadays, there are already wearable helmets relying on AR that turn a patient’s CT scan into a three-dimensional view that assists the surgeon in a spinal surgery, where every millimetre is critical to the success of the operation. The 3D image superimposed on the patient’s spine allows the doctor to see what is under the skin without leaving the visual field of the operating table. Such AR-driven device is already in exploitation in several US hospitals.
Remote Patient Monitoring
Remote patient monitoring refers to monitoring a person’s health outside of a conventional hospital or medical setting. Remote health monitoring can be done at home or in any other place where medical care may not be physically possible. The various IT healthcare solutions and technologies available in the modern world make it possible to remotely monitor patients and ensure the high quality of medical standards at the same time. Patients can use various IoMT tools and healthcare apps to monitor their health parameters such as vital signs, blood pressure, blood oxygen, weight, heart rate on the go and conveniently transfer real-time data online to their doctor for a recommendation.
Patients do not have to go to the hospital or clinic every time for a check-up, thus saving time and reducing costs. Remote patient monitoring is also essential after patients have been discharged, as it helps to monitor their recovery journey and make timely adjustments. Plus, remote monitoring helps lower the readmission rates in emergency departments and healthcare units, as only those with severe and urgent health issues enter medical facilities.
Is Digital Health the Future?
While the concept of digital health seems highly promising and lucrative, let’s not forget that some risk factors and potential challenges might slow down the digital transformation in healthcare. Given that players in the healthcare sector operate in one of the highest regulated ecosystems, the collaboration and integration of the actors involved will play a key role in the future.
Organisations that understand these trends and act on how patients would like to use medtech solutions, telemedicine, healthcare business solutions, or other technologies are likely to be better placed in the new context. Even if many developing countries aren’t going to experience such large-scale innovations, many governments prioritise and stimulate R&D investments by clear policies so that the healthcare industry can begin to follow global trends.
Author Biography Aleksandrina Vasileva
Aleksandrina is a Content Creator at Dreamix, a custom software development company, and is keen on innovative technological solutions with a positive impact on our world. Her teaching background mixed with interests in psychology drives her to share knowledge. She is an avid reader and enthusiastic blogger, always looking for the next inspiration.