Digital Transformation in the healthcare industry is the positive impact of technology in healthcare.
Digital transformation in healthcare is an elementary unit for a patient-focused approach to healthcare. It will help health specialists streamline operations, understand what the patient requires, build loyalty and trust, and offer a better user experience.
There are some of the technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Telemedicine – enables medical devices and blockchain electronic health records are just a few factual examples of digital transformation in healthcare which are reshaping the way we interact with health professionals, how our data is shared among providers and how decisions are made about our treatment plans and health outcomes.
In fact, in a recent survey, only seven percent of healthcare and pharmaceutical companies said they had gone digital, compared to 15 percent of companies in other industries.
Let’s look at the better state of digital transformation in healthcare.
The Growth of Wearable Medical Devices
The trend of the digital transformation in healthcare is companies collecting their health data from medical devices, including wearable technology.
In the past, most patients were satisfied with undergoing a physical once a year and only checking in with their doctors when something went wrong. But in the digital age, patients are focusing on prevention and maintenance and demanding information about their health more frequently.
As a result, healthcare companies are being proactive by investing in wearable technology devices that can provide up-to-date monitoring of high-risk patients to determine the likelihood of a major health event. According to a recent report, the wearable medical device market is expected to reach more than $27 million by 2023, a spectacular jump from almost $8 million in 2017.
Some of the most common of these devices include:
- Heart rate sensors
- Exercise trackers
- Sweat meters – used for diabetics to monitor blood sugar levels.
Oximeters – A pulse oximeter is a painless and reliable way for clinicians to measure a person’s blood oxygen levels and is often used by patients with respiratory illnesses such as COPD or asthma.
The Wonders of Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence (AI) is more than just a digital transformation trend in healthcare. AI represents the essence of medical innovation and industry players are eager to invest millions in it. The healthcare AI-powered tools market is expected to exceed $34 billion by 2025, which means this technology will shape almost all facets of the industry.
Chatbots and virtual health assistants are some examples of AI-based technology that patients are becoming familiar with. Chatbots can fill a multitude of roles from customer service representatives to diagnostic tools and even therapists. Their versatility is being translated into heavy investments. The global healthcare chatbots market is projected to reach $314.3 million by 2023 from $122 million in 2018.
But the real power of AI can be best observed in areas like precision medicine, medical imaging, drug discovery, and genomics. For instance, cancer patients used to receive cookie-cutter treatments with high failure rates. Now, thanks to AI’s sophisticated pattern recognition, these patients have access to personalized therapies tailored to their genetic makeup and lifestyle.
What AI-powered computer programs do for oncology, in a nutshell, is analyze thousands of pathology images of various cancers to provide highly accurate diagnoses and predict the best possible anti-cancer drug combinations. And, in medical imaging diagnostics, this technology helps radiologists spot details that escape the human eye.
Treating Patients with Virtual Reality
Ten years ago, telling people you could cut down their pain with a device similar to a video-game would have amassed a lot of blank stares. In 2018, however, Virtual Reality (VR) is the pièce de résistance of digital transformation in healthcare. Its oodles of applications are completely changing the way patients are being treated.
Here’s the thing: millions of people are still struggling with chronic pain. According to the CDC, 50 million U.S. adults had chronic pain in 2016. For them, VR is a safer, more efficient alternative to drugs. VR technology is being used not only to treat pain, but everything from anxiety to post-traumatic stress disorder, and stroke.
And that’s just a fraction of VR’s proven capabilities in the medical field. Other uses include doctors and residents using virtual-reality simulations to hone their skills or to plan complicated surgeries. VR headsets could also motivate wearers to exercise and help children with autism learn how to navigate the world. The global virtual and augmented reality in the healthcare market is expected to reach $5.1 billion by 2025. If you’re a healthcare company planning your digital marketing strategy, you should highly consider investing in this technology.
The Rise of On-Demand Healthcare Services
When you think of ‘on-demand,’ the first thing which crosses your mind is consumers who want things at their convenience, on their own time, and wherever they happen to be. The healthcare industry is entering the era of digital innovation, as patients seek on-demand healthcare because of their busy schedules. Mobile is especially important when considering content marketing.
People have simply become far more mobile in the past decade. Mobility is the name of the game, and recent statistics show that more than 50% of all web browsing in the world occurs on mobile devices as of 2018 (to be exact, 52%).
One of the first rules of content marketing is that you must identify where your targeted consumers gather and reach them on those platforms, i.e. mobile. That’s not surprising given that 77 percent of U.S. residents own a smartphone.
Furthermore, collecting and extracting data provided by digital communications will prove valuable. Understanding the needs and behaviors of target users, healthcare providers will analyze new ways to add value by building loyalty and trust.