1. Virtual care and remote medicine
How would you like to get the exact care and attention you do in a hospital or a clinic at your home? Wouldn’t it be something to look forward to? Virtual visits and care have grown exponentially due to the pandemic. In the year 2020 virtual visits for minor and routine appointments had grown by 1 billion. It is also said that in the year 2021 up to one-third of virtual appointments would be for mental health-related issues.
Virtual care and medicine will help open a lot of doors not only for patients but also for doctors. Doctors will be able to consult more patients via digital sources; it will also reduce the risk of spreading any contagion by any patient. This is especially best for populated countries such as China and India where the number of health personnel is low compared to the population ratio. Robotic healthcare assistance is also related to virtual care. With technology, many researchers have been able to create robots that can help diagnose and operate people via 5G.
2. Genomics and gene editing.
When existing cells are divided new proteins are created. These proteins inherit several traits via gene editing that can influence our traits. These traits are also known as phenotypes and are responsible for determining the cells longevity and its reaction to illness and damage. This cell manipulation technique has helped scientists advance the treatments for deadly diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Due to this development in genomics, we are likely to witness an exponential growth in the medication field and an introduction of a treatment known as “precision medicine”. Precision medicine is a technique where the drugs can be altered based on the genetic profile of a patient. This way the chances of allergic reactions will be reduced as well as making them much more effective.
The very same technique has been used to create a “lab on chip” which helped in rapidly detecting coronavirus. It is a handheld device which is capable of detecting coronavirus, the best part about this device is that it does not rely on inaccurate indicators such as coughing or an increased temperature. Apart from the medical uses of gene alteration, it has also been able to help in making caffeine-free coffee beans, this was first demonstrated by a UK based startup named Tropic Biosciences.
3. AI, IoT and Smart cities.
What is a smart city? The term smart city is a term used to describe the picture of an urban city with the amalgamation of 9f digital connectivity and data-driven decision making. The smart city will also provide the other urban features such as energy distribution, refuse collection, public transport networks and environmental health profile. The building block of this smart city concept is AI and IoT.
Due to the coronavirus, the focus of smart city has however shifted to a more concentrated concept, focusing on how to plan and manage the population with the concept without risking any individuals health in case of any further outbreaks. After the year 2020, the focus of the world and major organisations would be to develop healthcare by many folds with the help of technology also the focus of the planning and housing committees will also be something along these lines, to make homes that are not only smart but also sustainable.
4. Fairer health care insurance and coverage
Due to digitisation, every information regarding your health and life is available in digital form, this way the government and other health organisations will be provided with an accurate picture of your conditions and will be able to intervene when necessary. With the coronavirus, it is proved that we are willing to share our personal information where health is in concern. The track and trace system is proof of this willingness, with this system the growth and spread of the virus were controlled to an extent.
This will also be quite beneficial with regards to the financial point of view. The virus has had an adverse effect on the financial status of many countries, the revenues of healthcare facilities have fallen by 50% due to the fact that citizens are now avoiding treatments and operation due to concern of coronavirus. With the upcoming technologies regarding healthcare, patients will be able to rely on AI-driven tools that will be able to predict, diagnose, medicate and provide the apt treatment to patients without having any direct contact with a doctor. Insurance companies will be better suited to the technology to use their advanced prediction tool to understand the risks better and set premiums accordingly.
Apart from the many problems faced by the world during the coronavirus the pandemic has helped us understand the importance of health and the physical weakness of the country. Smart and conscious organisations will get on board this insight by providing their expertise, information, data and support. Healthcare is at the present the most important aspect of any country. Many countries have been successful in tackling coronavirus but there are many who still fail to combat the spread. Technology and health are the new Robin and Batman and if this partnership successes the benefit will be ours to reap.