Despite the pandemic causing significant technological changes in nearly every industry, it has impacted the healthcare industry the most through the latest virtual health technologies, like Telemedicine and Telehealth.
What is Telemedicine & Telehealth?
It is the use of digital technology to access healthcare services like the diagnosis and treatment of patients remotely. Tablets and smartphones are commonly used as home health monitoring devices. A report from Business Wire reveals that the global remote patient monitoring market was valued at $1,866 million in 2021 and it’s expected to reach $8,451 million in 2031.
The two types of telehealth & telemedicine services
Telehealth and telemedicine can be divided into three major categories based on virtual appointments the online patient monitoring systems. Here are the two ways these services are provided.
- Real-time telemedicine
The real-time telemedicine system is the online substitute for an in-person doctor appointment. Video conferencing software and online messaging applications are good examples of real-time virtual medication solutions. This is a great option for a general assessment of a patient and follow-up visits. A major benefit of the real-time tele-medication system is that both the patient and physician require only simple electronic gadgets to connect.
- Remote patient monitoring
While the real-time telemedicine system primarily focuses on creating connectivity between the patient and the physician, the remote patient monitoring system is focused on tracking a patient’s physical activities with electronic devices. Remote health monitoring devices are capable of tracking a patient’s vital signs like heart rate, physical activities, and movements. The benefit of remote patient monitoring is it allows high-risk patients to avail healthcare benefits even from the comfort of their homes.
How Telemedicine and Telehealth have revolutionized the Healthcare industry?
Though virtual medical care was available a decade ago, healthcare providers and patients adopted the technology quite slowly. With the emergence of COVID-19, the situation changed dramatically. The demand for telemedicine and telehealth surged at a high rate and according to experts, the technology is going to have steady growth long after the pandemic is over.
- Growing demand for remote healthcare option
The remote patient monitoring platform is considered ideal for the senior or aging population due to their safety purposes. Not only the aging population, even the next generations like millennials prefer medical consultation and prescription via telemedicine rather than visiting the doctor physically as it’s more convenient. According to Research and Markets data, the Global RPM (Remote Patient Monitoring) market will be worth $1.7 billion.
The statistics clearly show that the remote healthcare system is steadily gaining popularity not only among the aging population but also among the younger generations. The easy-to-use devices for remote patient monitoring are one of the prime reasons for it.
- Affordable healthcare system
One of the basic reasons e-healthcare is gaining popularity globally is its cost-reduction capability. Through virtual medical care, most patients and their families no longer have to travel to receive a doctor’s appointment. The low-cost devices for remote patient monitoring are also supporting the building of an affordable healthcare system.
- Enhancement of the quality of care
According to healthcare specialists, there are several reasons healthcare tech solutions have significantly improved the quality of patient care.
- Virtual care is going to benefit people with chronic diseases rather than having to visit the clinic physically, which can deteriorate their condition further.
- Virtual healthcare reduces the risk of traveling out of your home if you are suffering from any kind of infectious disease.
- The remote patient monitoring system is a good alternative for patients suffering from heart disease. As per the American Heart Association research report, RPM is effective for lowering blood pressure in comparison to traditional healthcare monitoring.
- Providing Healthcare on time
According to WHO (World Health Organization) and UNICEF(United Nations Children’s Fund), half of the healthcare services worldwide lack basic hygiene services in healthcare centers.
The remote patient monitoring platform can mitigate the shortage of healthcare providers in rural areas.
- Development of Healthcare Apps
As technology has made it possible to access the healthcare system from several touchpoints, mobile apps, and digital applications have helped to improve the healthcare system more than before.
Nowadays, apps on mobile devices are capable of monitoring the patient’s heartbeat and notifying the healthcare providers in case any abnormality is detected. Virtual health technology apps are very useful for getting instant information about medical records.
This is an overview of the five areas where Telemedicine and Telehealth have the potential to revolutionize health monitoring systems at home.
Role of COVID in promoting Telehealth and Telemedicine solutions
One direct impact of COVID-19 that can be noticed is that it has forced healthcare providers to make a rapid investment in Healthcare IT technology. A Statista report reveals that in 2019, the pre-COVID phase, the global telemedicine industry was $49.9 billion and $459.8 billion in 2030. This data indicates that COVID has assisted in promoting Telehealth and Telemedicine solutions up to an extent.
Having telemedicine and telehealth solutions available to people makes it easy for them to receive preventive treatment, as well as helps them with creating long-term health plans. The latest advancements in this technology have the potential to make the medical treatment processes more effective, organized, and easily available for all. Modern technologies like telemedicine are particularly beneficial for patients residing in remote areas where the availability of a healthcare system is limited.
Being an expert in Healthcare IT technology, we can help hospitals and clinics to transform their healthcare management with complete security while abiding by the privacy rules of the Medical Council of India.
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