Healthcare continues to change and evolve as the industry utilizes technology more and more for the ever growing needs of doctors, medical centers and hospitals. There are emerging and new technological innovations that impacted 2013 via the advances in these time and life-saving innovations.
One of the challenges of healthcare is having access to medical records, laboratory results, scans and other pertinent information that is required for diagnosis and treatment. Patients tend to have lengthy files and those in urgent situations or suffering with chronic conditions tend to have a lot of medical records that need to be accessed instantaneously. Portable computing devices have advanced, thanks in part to virtual desktop computing and virtual application streaming; doctors and staff can find those needed files and documents wherever they are and very quickly. This is because the portable computing devices of 2013 proved to be more powerful than those used in the past and the digital aspect makes paper charts and notes that could be hard to read a thing of the past.
Online Patient Communications
Though many equate online communication as something done via instant messaging, social media and even email; one technology proved to be highly useful in 2013. A patient portal site is one that is set up, maintained and monitored by the doctor or medical facility. Patients are given secure log in credentials and thus they can send and receive messages to and from their doctor when they have those simple questions that do not warrant a phone call. In fact, some patient portal sites were customized to include patient abilities such as scheduling or cancelling appointments, viewing lab work reports and even requesting medication refills.
Low Cost Digital Data Storage
During 2013 the cost of portable storage decreased once again and that to transformed the medical experience of patients and the healthcare industry as a whole. This is because in the past if a patient was sent to a specialist the primary care physician needed to enlist staff to help make sure all appropriate and pertinent documents were sent along in a timely manner. The low cost portable storage devices now available, such as flash drives, means that all patient information can be easily and quickly uploaded and sent with patients so they can hand deliver those crucial pieces of information to other medical personnel and providers so nothing is left to chance.
The future holds even more promise as more and more technologies permeate the healthcare industry. Advances in computing power makes lab results run faster, higher processing power allows for in depth scans and imaging tests to be clearer and more detailed and even electronic medical records continue to move in to the mainstream as more and more medical specialists get on board with that time saving measure. It seems as if 2013 was simply the start of a new era where physicians have access anywhere and anytime to patient information and thus that allows for better patient care regardless of where the patient is and even allows patients to get quality and customized care when away from home.