Seven key trends of digital transformation in healthcare
Every industry needs to adapt to current times, technology is constantly evolving and businesses need to catch up and then keep up with the times. The healthcare industry is constantly innovating, from telemedicine to the use of RPA to enhance the patient experience. Thanks to the innovative technology, patients undergo enhanced treatment with the help of virtual reality, wearable devices and much more.
The first key trend is the rise in on-demand healthcare, customers want appointments and care that fit around their schedule, they want convenience. People have become far more mobile than previous decades so customers expect and want to be diagnosed and treated online, through online tools so they can stay in the comfort of their home.
The second key trend is the importance of big data, it can provide several benefits such as a lower rate of medical errors. Online software will be able to flag any inconsistencies and mistakes in patient data which can then alert healthcare professionals and reduce the risk of error. The predictive analysis of big data is able to assist hospitals and clinics estimate future admission rates, therefore this helps the facilities allocate the proper medical staff to deal with patients. Healthcare companies should invest in their data.
The third key trend is patient treatment through virtual reality (VR). Millions of people suffer with chronic pain, virtual reality has proved to be a more efficient and a safer alternative to drugs. It can also be used to treat strokes, PTSD and more illnesses. From healthcare startups to multi-million pound businesses, VR should be at the forefront of all business plans.
The fourth key trend is the growth in wearable technology. Devices such as heart monitors and exercise trackers have been on the rise in recent years, these innovative devices allow for a personalised healthcare experience and gives the patient ownership of their own experience. In addition, data collected from the devices can improve the accuracy of treatment.
The fifth trend is predictive healthcare which can aid businesses of all sizes, it can help predict what illnesses and diseases may become major problems in the near future, this prediction can consequently reduce the pressure on healthcare systems.
The penultimate trend is , AI is transforming nearly every industry and healthcare is no exception. It has allowed for the implementation of chatbots and virtual health assistants which in turn improve and enhance the customer experience. The real power of AI is yet to be unleashed, it will soon improve precision medicine, drug discovery and more.
The last trend is blockchain and improved electronic health records. Blockchain is often seen as a puzzling concept however, the better people understand it, the more it will continue to advance the healthcare industry. The healthcare and pharmaceutical industries are already heavily investing in blockchain as it is already proven to be effective in preventing data breaches and also improving the accuracy of medical records.
Which trend do you think is the most important? Tweet us at @HealthcareDig and let us know.
London NHS trust cuts admin time with DrDoctor platform
Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in London has adopted a new digital pathway for its endoscopy diagnostic service. The trust says the new patient-facing digital technology, developed by DrDoctor, cutting the time taken to gather pre-operative information by more than a quarter.
DrDoctor is a software company that creates patient engagement platforms. The new system makes it possible for patients to complete assessments ahead of endoscopy procedures.
It also allows the trust to send reminder messages, digital letters and assessments to patients ahead of their operations. Digital letters allow patients to view and download their correspondence instantly, helping to prevent paper letters from arriving in the wrong order, and reducing confusion from them being lost in the post.
The DrDoctor Quick Question functionality is also being used to send email and text notifications to check with patients if they still need or want to be seen, which is helping to reduce waiting lists and cut the chance of cancellations. Broadcast messaging alerts patients to changes to clinics electronically, which saves the time of a phone call for staff.
Chelsea and Westminster NHS Foundation Trust is home to two of London’s busiest acute hospitals. Since deploying DrDoctor's system, it has seen the average time taken fall from 26 minutes to just under 19 minutes – a 29% decrease. At West Middlesex Hospital, the same time spent has reduced from 32 minutes to 12 minutes – a 63% decrease in time spent.
Bruno Botelho, Director of Digital Operations at the Chelsea and Westminster NHS Trust, said: “Thanks to DrDoctor, we have established an infrastructure to address the evolving needs of our patients and staff. By digitally engaging with patients we’re helping to release the capacity pressures our staff face. I’m really pleased that we can now provide a more efficient service to patients and provide more personalised care.”
Staff reactions have been positive too, with 80% of staff finding the pre-op assessment questionnaire useful. One specialty lead said: “With standard pre-assessment data gathered via the DrDoctor link, nursing staff have more time to focus on individual care plans and patient-centred care. From a service point of view, it's great to see patients more engaged in the pre-procedure process.”