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7 Health Technology Predictions for 2019

As every industry embraces new and improved technologies to enhance its operations and performance, healthcare sector is not left behind in this rush for technological advancement. Highlighted below are seven unique 2019 technology predictions that are going to really get many healthcare executives excited:

[1] Personalized digital health

The digital health revolution is just spreading through every specialty in healthcare delivery. Today, there are mobile apps designed to increase engagement between healthcare providers and their patients. It is virtually possible to do all pre-admission and post-admission processes on mobile applications. These include making appointments to see physicians, checking in, uploading and updating patient’s medical records, getting medical results, or receiving post-admission instructions or treatments from physicians. Personalized, mobile applications give patients a great deal of control when it comes to receiving timely and quick healthcare.

[2] Increasing use of voice search

Siri, Google Now, Cortana are causing waves in the use of smart speakers and native voice search. In 2018 alone, 20% of Google searches were voice searches, and it is reported that 1 in 6 Americans now possesses a smart speaker and 40% of adults are using voice searches every day. So, 2019 should be the year healthcare executives reconfigure their systems (websites, mobile applications, and servers) to accommodate voice search. Americans normally look for hospitals or other healthcare providers in their vicinity; so, it becomes imperatives for hospitals to update their IT infrastructure to meet the dynamic changes in the way people search for healthcare services.

[3] Chatbots in healthcare delivery

Over the years, chatbots’ features and usefulness have expanded in scope and application. It is possible to do a number of healthcare services with the assistance of chatbots. Healthcare providers can manage their patients’ improvement via chatbots. They can provide the necessary help in an emergency, offer better customer service, diagnose mild medical conditions, and improve their overall customer service. Personal chatbots can be instrumental in managing the health of patients across all ages and demographics. As hospitals struggle with patient administration and retention, chatbots, as a communication technology bridges the interrelationship gap between healthcare providers and their patients.

[4] Social media platforms and healthcare

Social media platforms are becoming a viable tool for healthcare providers. On social media, they can reach out to as many patients as possible, disseminating important medical information. There are reports of how governmental and private health agencies have proactively used social media to prevent the spread of diseases such as the flu, measles, smallpox, and other virulent infections. Advanced social media capabilities make it possible for healthcare providers to enjoy one-on-one connection with their patients and monitor their health improvement over video and messaging apps embedded on some social media platforms. Social media real-time metrics and analytics can be used to determine the level of engagement and follow-up during treatments.

[5] Blockchain and healthcare services

Many hospitals are warming up to the possible application of blockchain in improving their healthcare services.  Even though it has not gained a widespread appeal, blockchain’s secured, digital record-keeping structure seems appealing to healthcare executives who have to struggle with maintaining the confidentiality and security of patients’ medical histories. More so, blockchain will facilitate the ownership and security of data assets, which could be patient’s personal records of tests, clinical observations, and other related reports. Unlike the current practice whereby all medical information about a patient is dumped at the desk of the healthcare provider. In near future, it may be possible to tag or track medical reports, detecting from whom it is originating and who is the recipient.

[6] Artificial intelligence

In 2018, over 70% of research in medical imaging looked at the possibility of using deep-learning and other AI capabilities to improve functions such as drug development, operational security and analytics. This huge exploration into the medical usefulness of AI shows that the healthcare industry has finally realized that it can’t improve its routine services without using artificial intelligence. The same rate of AI exploration is expected to continue in 2019 and well into 2050.

[7] Migration to the cloud

In a survey conducted by Health Innovation in 2018, it is reported that about 84% of IT professionals employed in the healthcare sector confirmed that their organizations have already migrated their data from data centers to the cloud. This rapid utilization of the cloud technology is expected to grow at a steady rate. Healthcare executives are happy that their patients’ data can be processed, stored, and retrieved at the speed of light.

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