Level In recent years, the healthcare sector has undergone a quiet revolution, with many providers turning to telemedicine solutions to streamline and improve patient care. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the use of technology to provide remote healthcare through smart-device apps, with clinicians’ time being freed up to provide more dedicated face-to-face treatment and patients not having to make regular visits to medical sites for check-ups.
With the benefits of home health care technology now well known, this article looks at how you can use them to take your telemedicine business to the next level.
What is Home Health Care Technology?
Home health care technology uses digital communication to access health care services remotely and allow patients to manage their health and treatment at home.
There are several ways in which this technology is currently used, from monitoring the health of people with chronic conditions and allowing for early intervention to allowing patients to manage appointments and prescription requests and access their medical records without the need for time-consuming visits to the surgery.
As technology develops at a breakneck pace, many will become commonplace within the telemedicine industry.
Internet of Things (IoT)
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of interconnected systems and devices that collects and shares data to allow for development and learning.
In the telemedicine arena, the IoT enables real-time data to provide the patient with higher-quality levels of remote healthcare. Using wearable devices and other home health care devices to check blood pressure, oxygen saturation, temperature, and heart rate, patients can transmit results for analysis by medical professionals.
More and more wearables are integrated with cloud-based systems, which allow for tracking a patient’s vitals throughout the day without any intervention from the individual, which allows easy evaluation for the patient themselves and healthcare professionals. Should unusual activity show up, the patient can swiftly use their telemedicine app to get urgent, and doctors can act quickly to provide early intervention, which could be lifesaving.
The IoT also allows paramedics and first responders to take EEG, EKG, and other readings on-site or on-route to the hospital. This will enable doctors and nursing staff to be prepared in advance for the patient’s arrival, allowing them to respond immediately to emergencies.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The use of AI in more comprehensive healthcare provision is already well established. However, the part it can play in telemedicine and home healthcare is becoming more apparent. For example, AI provides prompts that make it easier to understand a patient’s medical history during a remote consultation, adjusting questions based on responses.
In addition, AI algorithms can help with self-diagnosis for several conditions while also providing prompts and reminders for medication and routine checks based on what the data is saying.
Moving forward, the next generation of AI capabilities will make it possible for more health data to be integrated into Remote Patient Monitoring systems, helping the systems to detect irregular patterns that might hint at severe potential health issues. For example, systems will be able to track blood pressure and glucose while also taking a patient’s temperature on a regular basis following surgery, allowing doctors to monitor for signs of infection.
Like AI, the value of robotics is already being felt within the healthcare arena.
Remote Patient Monitoring can also be assisted in telemedicine by using robotics, allowing specialists to consult on cases in rural hospitals while not leaving their consultancy room. Autonomous telehealth robots can enable clinicians to interact with patients remotely, while a nurse can communicate with a patient in acute care while performing other tasks.
In addition, some robots can follow doctors on their daily rounds, allowing specialists to check in remotely. In contrast, others enable surgeons to assist with operations from a remote location by enabling them to see the same view as the surgeon performing the procedure.
Personal Health Data
An increasing amount of patient data is now being held online as electronic health records (EHR) or electronic medical records (EMR), making integration with wearables, sensors, and other telehealth apps easy, quick and convenient.
EMR systems for home health allow patient-reported data to be added to a patient’s medical history in real-time, allowing clinicians to make treatment decisions remotely, without the patient’s need to visit a site.
Home care EMR updates not only allow for clinicians to be able to provide a better quality of care and more targeted treatment plans, but the digitization of patients’ records allows for easier access and the ability to share it amongst patients, their families, and if needed, emergency departments and specialists.
While some concerns remain over data privacy with home health EMR, security will be at the forefront of thinking for system providers moving forward to increase user confidence.
Treating a child with a long-term chronic illness can be an extremely draining experience for the child and carers alike. However, technology has begun to be used to ease that burden by allowing.
Many children become shy and uncommunicative in a healthcare setting, finding their surroundings and staff intimidating. With RMS, healthcare professionals can assess children in a more comfortable environment, allowing them to feel more at ease and engage more.
The introduction of virtual reality technologies into the healthcare industry is likely to move into telemedicine before too long, allowing children and their carers to interact virtually with healthcare professionals within the metaverse. In addition to this, many telehealth services are being dedicated to pediatric care, with ideas like physiotherapy designed to mimic video games.
Home Health Care is Here to Stay
Although the COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly acted as a catalyst for developing and adopting new technologies within the home healthcare telemedicine industry, the wide-ranging benefits are clear.
With new technologies being developed, the high quality and targeted health care available to patients at help will continue to increase, allowing patients to experience a more convenient healthcare environment and medical professionals to focus their face-to-face time more effectively.