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Why Is Software Innovation Vital In The Healthcare Industry!

‘Tech-ing’ Healthcare to the next level with Software Innovation

Advances in software technology are vital for the world that we now live in — particularly within the healthcare sector. As software innovation continues to take over every aspect of our lives, it has begun to completely transform the way we run our healthcare services. Here are just a few ways in which software is making a hard impact on the medical and health industry.

Patient Analytics

The advent of personal and wearable health-related tech such as Fitbits and implants means that patients are now able to take responsibility for their own wellbeing. Tech like this allows patients to monitor important factors including heartbeat, BMI, calories consumed and burned and, even exposure to sunlight. Tech which was once no more than a novelty is rapidly becoming a commonly used way of keeping tabs on our own health — and transmitting that information to a medical professional. With medical services at breaking point in many countries, this is a great way for patients to take ownership of their own health and to ease the pressure on medical staff.

Information Sharing

We’ve all seen the jokes about doctors and their indecipherable hand-writing. Thankfully, digitalisation means that not only are records now recorded clearly and safely on computers but, patients can actually access their own medical records and information — including test results — at any time they choose.

Internet of Medical Technology

The internet of medical technology (IoMT) has meant that we’re able to make huge leaps forward in fast diagnosis and treatment of chronic illnesses. We now have devices which record and report health activity at the level of the nervous system. This means that actual data on a patient’s condition is available — offering real data to professionals instead of having to rely on a patient’s ability to describe his or her various symptoms. By using software to analyse the progression of a disease, the medical world is able to better understand — and therefore treat — common illnesses. With better understanding comes better prevention which is great news for patients and doctors alike.

Appointments and communication

Many of us remember a time when getting an appointment with a GP meant wasting a huge amount of time on hold whilst trying to get through to a doctor’s receptionist. Software innovation now allows patients to book appointments online, thus relieving pressure on medical employees. Advances in software also mean that patients can get hold of repeat prescriptions and simple medical advice without having to actually visit a clinic or GP surgery.

The Issues

All of this is, of course, great news for patients and healthcare professionals but, is it all good? As with anything else concerning technological advances, there are some downsides to embracing innovations in software technology.

Privacy

One of the biggest concerns about medical software innovation is, of course, privacy. Our medical histories and information is a personal and private thing and, many people worry about this information falling into the wrong hands with data sharing. This is a particular worry for people suffering from conditions such as HIV and STDs. As software use becomes more and more common in healthcare, the industry will need to focus on security in order to allay patient fears.

Data ownership

In the last few years, data has rarely been out of the news. Medical professionals are under a huge amount of pressure to put software innovation in place whilst remaining compliant with government regulations concerning data. This will involve ensuring that permission is gained from patients at every stage of the process.

Funding

Replacing antiquated systems with new software, costs a lot of cold hard cash- something which many medical services simply don’t have. This tends to mean that professionals are battling budgets when trying to upgrade.

Patient Resistance

Although advancements in medical technology are largely welcomed, there is some resistance from patients — particularly those in the older age brackets. Many patients are distrustful of the technology and would still prefer to see a doctor or nurse in person rather than using the tech.

There’s no doubt that software innovation is the future of our medical and healthcare industries. Whilst this is of paramount importance, it’s equally vital that medical services have access to highly skilled and qualified IT professionals to make sure that the tech is doing its job — whilst letting the medical professionals do theirs.

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