3 Ways Technology is Transforming Diagnostics as We Know It
Technology is steadily altering healthcare, whether it is diagnostic equipment to let you look inside the human body while eliminating exploratory surgery or electronic health records to eliminate the need for paper records. Here are 3 ways technology is transforming diagnostics as we know it. We’ll discuss both the nature of these technologies and the benefits they each bring.
The Rise of Preventative Healthcare
The cost of long term conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity is leading to investment in preventative healthcare. The West is seeing regular coverage extended to blood sugar monitoring, blood pressure checks and other screening tests. When someone is at risk of developing a lifestyle disease, they are given over to caseworkers who work with them to minimize their odds of developing the condition. If the condition does arise, they receive close supervision to minimize the odds of the condition getting out of control. For example, patient education and close supervision by a healthcare adviser results in fewer emergency room visits for very high or very low blood sugar and reduces the odds of negative health effects like kidney failure and heart disease.
Facilities are getting into the risk management and preventing act themselves. For example, hospitals are hiring companies like Infection Control Results to review procedures and facilities so they can minimize the risk of patients contracting infections.
Paper Diagnostic Tests
Paper diagnostic tests would make testing for West Nile, malaria, dengue fever and a dozen other conditions fast and affordable for the developing world while allowing the tests themselves to be done by nurses and other low skill medical workers. And by bringing down the cost to less than a dollar a test, it makes the medical diagnosis itself affordable for the poorest in the world and makes it possible to create tests for orphan diseases that industry leaders don’t see the profit to work with today.
Online healthcare in various forms is being rolled out on a massive scale to save money. One common practice is putting patient records online so that patients don’t have to wait for medical test results to be mailed to them and simplify sharing medical records with other healthcare providers. Online medical education is popular because it allows patients to learn how to better manage their health condition for very little money.
Telemedicine is also coming to the fore. For example, many patients in rural communities enjoy consulting with professionals via a smartphone or video conferencing center in the local clinic instead of driving two hours to visit the specialist. Being able to consult with a psychologist from home reduces the burden on caregivers to transport someone with medical problems while letting the psychologist save time and money on traveling to see patients or having unfilled slots.
Technology is transforming diagnostics in more ways than one. Health insurers and public health programs are investing in preventative healthcare to prevent more costly and serious conditions later on. Paper diagnostic tests are on the eve of revolutionizing diagnostics by making it cheap, ubiquitous and even something one can do at home. Online healthcare brings healthcare to your home without making the doctor make a house-call and delivers information far faster than the post.