Innova Solutions > Perspectives > Benefits of Digitalizing Healthcare

Preface

I have been working in the Digital Healthcare domain for many years and witnessed an exponential growth in digital healthcare from 2008 till today. My first project in Digital Health was Galvanon, which was acquired by NCR. It is the first commercially available patient self-service Kiosk solution to simplify the patient registration process, direct patients to healthcare locations, eliminate unnecessary paperwork, thus reducing long wait times for patients. The continuum of care provided to the patient through digital channels fascinated me, and I worked in ‘PatientPoint’ which took the patient-provider engagement through mobile devices, tablets, and IPADs. Further down the years, I also worked in helping Kaiser Permanente mobile app integrating all the patient needs in one single platform from booking appointments to bill paying to viewing test results and buying medications. Today with this continuing fascination towards Digital Health, I would like to write about the benefits of Digitalizing Healthcare and how accessing healthcare information has evolved from paper-based to digital computers to simple wrist bands.

Digital healthcare and trending gadgets for tracking healthcare data

Digitalizing is a cluster of information technologies which helps monitoring patient’s health data – such as biosensors or telecare, telemedicine deployed for diagnosis, and therapeutic purposes, and information systems used to manage clinical data about patients. Electronic Health Records (EHRs) are a key example of attempts to use information and communication technologies to record and exchange clinical data. This clinical data of patients can be exchanged between patients, providers, and Insurance companies and help patients control their health records. EHRs overcomes the risks of documenting and sharing the information paper based that are too often result in fragmented. The goal of this digital health is to help individuals to be provided with greater access to medical information rather than restricting the information with medical professionals. This movement will eventually help individuals self-diagnose and take better care of their health. Many diseases are now diagnosed by technology rather than by symptom.

Let us read about some trending devices and softwares that help track patient data and help in diagnosis:

Mobile Apps

The latest to enter the field of medical diagnosis using digital technologies are mobile software applications known as apps. The apps are created for mobile smartphones, tablets, and also for Windows and Mac OS. Electronic devices like mobile phones, tablets, OS platforms use these apps and collaborate with online platforms like social media sites to access medical and health information on the internet. Apps not only track healthcare information but can also help medical professionals by providing detailed anatomical data and visuals, digital versions of medical textbooks and dictionaries, training videos and diagrams, and drug prescribing information.

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Wrist Bands and Smart Watches

These include devices that can measure body weight, blood pressure, energy expended, steps taken, sleep patterns, and brain activity. These devices assist patients with their medical records and treatment regimens. It also helps patients to track medical appointments, access medical trials, seek appropriate medical care, and engage in patient support networks. Patients can share information on their condition with friends and family, monitor and self-manage chronic ailments such as diabetes and high blood pressure and record their symptoms and manage post-treatment care after treatment for acute conditions such as cancer.

Telemedicine and Virtual Appointments

Telemedicine (TM) and Virtual Appointments has been a rapidly growing method of providing wellbeing. The TM and Virtual Appointments are to review the medical condition, laboratory results, anthropometric measures, calculate height velocity, review, and develop medical management plans without performing physical examinations.

Telemedicine and Virtual Appointments can offer a practical solution to provide coverage for general and specialized physicians, suddenly unavailable, or to increase access to medical visits in underserved areas.

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Role of blockchain healthcare analytics, and machine learning

In the healthcare ecosystem, the medical information is stored and distributed in various silos. Digital identity is an excellent opportunity to bring patients in an owner position of all health information. As described, many different stakeholders in healthcare handle and store medical data: General practitioners (GP), medical specialists, hospitals, physiotherapists, insurance companies, etc. As the data in standalone systems, these data silos are not connected to share data with different stakeholders. Blockchain technology delivers a complete solution to all these problems. Data analytics and cognitive computing/machine learning, in addition to blockchain secured data, could enable access to a rich set of standardized, non-patient identifiable information to support medical researchers developing new treatments by using, e.g., demographic data or genetic markers. Combined with a digital identity, blockchain technology can boost efficiency and effectiveness in healthcare for providers, payers, and patients and provides data security as a basic need for trust.

In recent years, the data processed by the healthcare domain is increasing at an unprecedented rate, accompanied by rich knowledge for medical research. But the low information has led to the origination of Healthcare Analytics. Healthcare Analytics collects the data from a myriad of areas such as clinics, hospitals, government agencies, health insurance, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology agencies, allows for the examination of trends and patterns in various healthcare data. Based on this pattern, healthcare analytics determines how healthcare upgrades while constraining exorbitant spending. The digitization of the healthcare system in the last decade has led to an ever-increasing source for data production.

The amount of data generated is increasing exponentially, and the collection of healthcare data from various sources is rapidly on the rise. Collection, management, and storage of all this data is very costly and may not be of value unless converted into insights that can be used by the healthcare ecosystem. For maximum optimization and usefulness, the data needs to be analyzed, interpreted, and acted. Machine Learning and Deep Learning allow for the generation of new knowledge from all the collected data and can help reduce the cost/time-based burden on all healthcare systems via learning, better prediction, and diagnosis. These tools serve to improve the overall clinical workflow from the preventive and diagnostic phase to the prescriptive and recovering stage in health management.

Innova digital solutions to customers

Innova solutions strive towards building a better healthcare system by collaborating with payers, providers, and channel partners to help improve clinical decision-making, simplify billing and payment process, connecting physicians and patients enabling, a better patient experience. The solutions are focused on improving clinical, financial, and patient engagement outcomes by using robust software, deep researched analytics, and helping customers leverage the network solutions and technology-enabled services. Managing data has been the asset that Innova Solutions has over the years and is converting this data to provide solutions that help payers and providers use this data to optimize their revenue, reduce operational costs, and to improve healthcare quality.

Innova solutions help Payers, Providers, and Pharmacies by providing a wide range of services that include application development, mobile apps, cloud migrations, Robotic process automation, analytics solutions, Payment solutions, chatbots, etc. Below mentioned are few solutions from Innova that were implemented at customer locations to help the customers save money, increase accuracy, minimize errors, drive continuous improvements, and administer Telemedicine practices:

Innova’s Care Expand focuses on patient acquisition, patient care coordination, and patient health management that help increase more revenue, more referrals, and better engagement. CareExpand helps in delivering virtually accessible medical care using Telemedicine.

Innova solutions helped a large financial and administrative healthcare network customer in the U.S.A. by streamlining their payment process, automating the process to improve turnaround times for customer requests, enabling Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to be leveraged for preventive care, and reducing the overall costs.

Innova solutions helped a healthcare major to track patient health status and to share the data with the physicians in real-time, with minimal human intervention. For this, Innova solutions have helped creating a mobile application that can be used by wearable technologies, like wrist bands and smartwatches, to gather medical information in real-time, and physicians can monitor and analyze the individual’s health record. Physicians can also send a secure message to the patients using this solution

Innova solutions developed chatbots to build customer engagement and trust. They help in automating the operations, generating the leads, and driving revenue

Innova solutions help pharmacies manage costs, reduce risks, enable digital transformation to enhance patient satisfaction, provide secure and accurate communications between systems by using technologies like Machine learning, Predictive analysis, cloud migration, and Robotic process automation

Conclusion : Benefits of digital health and few risks to be considered

From the above information, we can understand how rapidly Digital health is progressing to provide a better healthcare system for patients, payers, providers, and everyone who has access to digital platforms. Electronic health data allows the medical information to be shared amongst stakeholders easily, and the patient information can be accessed and updated as a patient undergoes treatment. Mobile apps and wearable devices are leading the current market for providing patient accessible information and tracking patient data that can help patients keep good care of their health. Technologies like Blockchain, Digital Analytics, and Machine learning help store, secure, and derive patterns and trends from Healthcare data that help in providing solutions. Companies like Innova solutions keep creating new solutions for maintaining the continuum of care delivered to the patient. We can clearly understand that Digital healthcare is on its way to continuous improvements, which is a positive sign for the coming generations.

However, we should not forget the risks involved in managing the data of Digital health before using them, and we should consider building systems that safeguard data privacy, data security, and accuracy of the information shared. Digital identity is an important step to be considered when distributing the data through multiple systems, thus overcoming transparency, ethical, and privacy issues. There is also a need for the interconnected health systems to be harmonized to resolve possible conflicts and inconsistencies among standards.

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