Coronavirus pandemic has affected everyone's life. Many of the healthcare industries are now facing the challenges of COVID-19. Every organization fighting this deadly disease, social workers, agencies delivering social services, and other people have become the center of world’s attention.
Several IT and tech companies are putting their efforts into fighting this ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Every now & then, several innovations are being launched to address this coronavirus attack. The healthcare industries and other organizations are safeguarding their physical systems so that they could fight with natural calamities like earthquakes and tsunamis. However, coronavirus pandemic has shown that these innovations are not enough to cope up with biological disasters.
As days are passing by, it is getting clear that the COVID-19 pandemic is spreading throughout the world. It has given a challenge to the entire healthcare industry. Also, it is observed that in several cases, the systems could not cope up with the patients that needed extra care for COVID-19. However, the healthcare industries are altering their systems at a faster rate and are looking for solutions in less time.
Also, digital technologies are reshaping and are delivering solutions for the short and long term. For instance, today, patients don’t have to go to the doctor to ask for the medicines; instead, they could do a video call, book an appointment, and do other things. The patients or doctors could also personalize anything depending on their interests.
For instance, several mobile apps are focusing on patient’s engagement and providing transparency. Let's check out other ways how the COVID-19 pandemic is helping in reshaping the healthcare industry.
Development of Technological Solutions
Several lessons could be learned from the technology that is used in public health surveillance. Right from linking data to the testing labs to immediately link testing in different locations, the technology is helping a lot in reducing the spread of disease.
Some countries like South Korea have been using smartphone technology to manage contacts and to understand the patients better. In the United States, healthcare industries are doing online screening to diagnose patients.
Several healthcare organizations are delivering their best in times of disaster. Today, when over 70% of the workforce are quarantined, the technology is playing a crucial role by offering services digitally to home and other locations.
The Sudden Upscale of Online Tools
Frontline health workers have been quarantined since the coronavirus outbreak. Many health systems and tools are helping the patients in checking the symptoms before going to the doctor. The Chief Digital Strategy Officer at Washington stated that they saw over 50,000 patient logins and above a million messages popping through the chatbot in the first month of the coronavirus outbreak.
Also, the patients who were asked for screening had to wait in a queue due to more virtual visits. Providence Health redeployed Express-care clinicians to attend the patients that came through chatbots. Similarly, other healthcare systems are using their digital tools and bringing more clinicians on board.
A Huge Increase in TeleHealth Visits
It seems that after every crisis, new challenges and opportunities arise for the healthcare industry. It is observed that the number of telehealth consults has increased at a rapid rate after the pandemic. Nearly 400% - 500% of the increase is seen in telehealth visits in a week.
Also, the healthcare industry is providing training to thousands of doctors/people on how to conduct telehealth visits. People are making the best use of telehealth visits, and this is a great way of obtaining healthcare at minimum costs.
Health Systems Have Doubled Their Remote Workforce
Many health systems are using CDSS
to get the patient’s information at their fingertips. It reduces errors and improves efficiency. But looking at the current scenario, cybercriminals are taking advantage of this outbreak.
Health systems have increased the number of their remote workforce, allowing them to use VDI (Visual Display Interfaces). It looks like, despite strong security, the virtual workplace is unsafe from cybercriminals.
Surprisingly, healthcare industries have changed a lot and established a secure culture. They have planned for unexpected results and limiting network access.
How Technology is Playing a Crucial Role in Containing COVID-19
COVID-19 cases are increasing day by day. Healthcare industries are searching for tools and medications to stop this outbreak.
Digital health communities have released new tools to monitor the COVID-19 and to provide better treatment. While new technologies are launching every day, the health systems could also use the existing resources to stop the spread of this COVID-19.
Healthcare organizations and end-users are seeing the benefits of health gadgets. People are scared of infections and are using healthcare apps for better health results.
Everyone is buying fitness-tracking gadgets to monitor their body at home. They are getting immediate feedback for blood pressure, body temperature, and other health signals at home. This has rapidly increased the use of fitness gadgets in the world.
Robots are Fighting Pandemics
Robots are playing a vital role in the world of technology. Not only are they reducing human efforts but also fighting with this sudden outbreak. Youibot Robotics Technologies created a human-height robot that could sanitize the rooms using ultraviolet lights and also measure the temperature of people passing by.
A robot that could fight the pandemic is a surprise to many. Another Chinese start-up, MegaHealth Information technology, saw an unexpected increase in its sales in the last few months. They developed a medical ring that could monitor blood oxygen levels and heart rate. Initially, they developed this product for patients having breathing problems, but after the COVID-19 attack, it has extended its use.
Apple and Google Announced Plan to Launch APIs
Leading companies like Google and Apple have planned to launch APIs that would enable interoperability between Android and iOS products. They would also build a Bluetooth-based contact tracing functionality. This would open the door for more health apps and government health initiatives.
COVID-19 Tracking Program by the Kingdom of Bahrain
The kingdom of Bahrain has launched the COVID-19 tracking program that is based on GPS tracking electronic bracelets and contact tracing app. The app alerts the government monitoring station when an isolated person leaves isolation.
Furthermore, the Ministry of health officials might randomly send a picture request to the individual, to which he/she should send a picture with a bracelet or a clear picture showing his/her face.
GE Healthcare is Collaborating With Microsoft to Launch a COVID-19 Patient Monitoring System
A leading global medical technology company, GE Healthcare is planning to extend its collaboration with Microsoft to launch a cloud-based COVID-19 monitoring software for health systems.
The software would provide a central hub from which hospitals could monitor patients in ICU and also those on ventilation. They believe that remote monitoring tools could help every health care organization to limit its staff by not utilizing them for infected patients.
Exercising at Home
It is observed that after the COVID-19 outbreak, the number of people exercising at home has increased rapidly. By seeing this, several apps and gadget providers have added advanced features to their devices. They have added the thermometer function to the smartwatch to monitor body temperature.
Aarogya Setu - An App That Alerts Users If They Have Come in Contact WIth COVID-19 Patient
Aarogya Setu app, launched by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, provides essential health services to people. The app alerts the users if they have come in contact with COVID-19 infected and what measure to take if this happens. The app was downloaded by over 10 million people within five days.
If we ignore the current crisis for a short time, then you could see the important changes in the healthcare industries that promise a great future. Right from the boom in telemedicine to tracking the disease in a minute, several changes would be seen in the future. The current use of the latest gadgets and their excellent outputs have the potential to produce positive results.
Other than HIS
and CDSS, these healthcare tech trends
would also make a great impact on the world in the coming years. It could be assumed that 2020 would not only be remembered for the COVID-19 pandemic but also the era where digital solutions have transformed the world.