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The impact of the global Covid-19 pandemic has been felt by people of all ages, businesses of all sizes, industries of all types. But the most heavily challenged of industries across the world has been healthcare.
The global health care system had almost come down to a halt. Taken a back with the sudden scale and magnitude of the arriving pandemic. Global healthcare facilities were and still are operating at nearly maximum capacity, facing a barrage of problems. Like for example, patient overflow, staffing, supply chains for critical and non-critical drugs, lack of life-saving medical equipment and gear.
Medical facilities were not prepared to handle such a situation, from both the knowledge and operational side. Existing systems and hospital processes were inadequate to deal with the challenges presented by the pandemic. Many gaps were uncovered with existing healthcare systems and the industry as a whole had to rethink its approach to health care. Surrounded by technology, led most medical facilities to believe that custom healthcare software solutions were the way to go! How is that possible? Let’s find out.
Why Custom Healthcare Software Solutions Became a Priority for the Medical Industry?
The healthcare industry and in particular the public sector healthcare facilities are notorious for a host of problems. These facilities are the ones in need of modernization from existing paper-based mechanisms. Even though these systems are still functional, the arrival of the pandemic made sure to unearth their legacy nature. The healthcare industry has many problematic areas:
- No remote access or ability to perform non-face-to-face consultations over large distances.
- Management of countless hard-file medical records of patients.
- Wastefulness and inventory management issues of hospital supplies, gears, and other critical equipment.
- Lack of credible pharmaceutical stores that offer services online
- High rates of data redundancy.
- No formal and or national-level mechanism of data sharing amongst healthcare facilities.
- Laborious Medicaid and Medicare reimbursement activities that occupy the time of vital healthcare professionals.
Health Care Technology and Covid-19
Since the growth of technology, the healthcare industry has not shied away from pursuing definitive steps towards healthcare digitization. Health care facilities have now started pursuing specialized healthcare software development services to ensure effective patient care, service delivery and security.
The healthcare system reacted to the pandemic in a three-phase manner: respond, recover, and renew. The first phase mainly involved responding by cutting down all non-essential spending towards prospective IT solutions. Where now, the focus would be on essentials that include value creation. More solutions blending health care and IT would be witnessed within the recovery phase. New sectors within the healthcare industry saw come to light, with focus on custom medical software related to remote monitoring, patient engagement applications and telehealth.
Range and Types of Healthcare Solutions in the Medical Industry
There are various types of healthcare solutions being provided by custom medical software development companies. However, these can largely be divided into categories:
Medical software & services
- Hospital management systems;
- Medical billing and invoicing software;
- Patient portals and suites to track and view history of health related information
- Electronic Health Record systems
- Safety measures and medical data protection
- Connect tools, APIs, and systems
- AI-ML based medical diagnosis software
- Cloud-based medical database software.
- E-prescription Solutions
- Appointment scheduling [calendars, trackers]
- Telemedicine mobile and web application, and AI-based chatbots
- Remote patient monitoring applications.
Supply chain & drug manufacturing
- Digital solutions for drug manufacturing and compounding
- Business process automation software
- Bespoke drug order management systems
- Drug inventory management software
- Data management and predictive maintenance
- AI for pharmaceutical processing optimization
- IoT solutions for the pharmaceutical supply chain
- Pharmaceutical supply chain quality assurance
Health, social & wellbeing services
- Solutions for social care and health trust organizations
- Integration with social media channels to promote a healthy lifestyle
- Social media applications that promote a healthy lifestyle
- Digital support platforms for the disabled
- Mobile health applications
Life science services & solutions
- AI/ML software for the interpreting of life science data and process optimization
- Medical imaging solutions, e.g. analyzing MRI scans to find anomalies
- Systems for the analysis of the in vivo cell base, e.g. image analysis and Deep Learning
- Advanced solutions for early-stage drug discovery
- Immunotherapy with AI
Healthcare Solutions gaining Traction in the Medical Industry
Telehealth has seen significant recognition and usage by healthcare professionals. Being adopted in healthcare facilities across the globe. Allowing more patients to be treated through innovative channels and providing quality care. Connecting health care professionals directly to patients without any intermediaries, eliminating time consuming paperwork and waiting periods. Through telehealth, the chances of no-show appointments are drastically reduced. Over all, the patient experience has been completely overhauled, making the user in control and valued in the process
The pandemic saw the introduction of the widespread use of monitors with remote monitoring functionalities. This has become especially important in healthcare institutions, where in person contact in critical areas like that of an ICU or Covid wards is kept minimal. This eased out the physical healthcare infrastructure, by allowing not so critical patients to be monitored remotely and kept to their homes. The ones diagnosed with Covid-19 could be provided with timely medical assistance, without increasing the risk of exposure to others.
IoT and IoMT
The growth in IoT development has led to the formation of a new segment called the Internet of Medical Things. Hence, basic and critical medical equipment like wearables and ECG and EKG monitors are used to monitor the most common and basic of human health parameters. Like, skin temperatures, oxygen saturation, glucose and blood pressure readings to name a few.
In Final Understanding
There are no doubts that the healthcare industry is challenged with problems of global and epic proportions. Lessons were learned from the Covid-19 pandemic and the industry’s unsatisfactory handling of the situation. Since then, the healthcare industry is on a path of recovery and modernization.
Advancements in healthcare technology has allowed global healthcare professionals to better connect with, and treat their patients. Even though slow at first, the pandemic and subsequent locked restrictions accelerated the rate of adoption of various technologies. As well as made custom healthcare software solutions a priority for healthcare facilities with bespoke needs. Healthcare technology software and mobile applications not considered previously are gaining immense popularity, due to the advantages they bring.
The telemedicine and telemetry industries by itself are multi-billion dollar industries, with growth numbers surpassing single values for this decade. The demand for such solutions will continue to rise, as large investments by healthcare facilities continue to pour in. To provide innovative solutions that provide value-based patient care and experience. The reality of this can be made possible, by using the services of a reliable custom healthcare software development company. Having the required technical and industry experience, in order to reach the eventual goal of maximum health coverage for all.