Trial and error are the cornerstones of human achievement and the healthcare industry is no different… and yet, every so-called ‘mistake’ in research fills patients’ hearts with hope. Every ‘error’ is medical professionals striving to cure the world’s ills and woes. Each step has shaken the industry’s foundation on what was once thought impossible. Trial and error correspond with success.
Here are a few ways that the healthcare industry is revolutionizing the world:
In the healthcare industry, 3-D printing has a plethora of applications: prototyping, customization, research, and manufacturing. Surgeons can replicate patient-specific organs to assist their research, prepare their procedures, and cost-effectively develop tailored prosthetic limbs and organs for transplant. For instance, this past year, a team of bioengineers at the University of Washington and Rice University were able to create a 3-D printed replica of a human lung. Imagine the minute, intricate, and delicate vernacular system that your lungs support on a daily basis. They were able to recreate its function! During testing, the model was even able to maintain normal blood pressure and simulate breathing movements.
It wouldn’t be 2020 if smart technology wasn’t circulating throughout industries! Innovative technology is constantly reforming the healthcare industry with the inclusion of wearable smart devices. Their capabilities range from tracking blood pressure and heart rate to medication, exercise, and appointment reminders. All of this data is accessible by the primary physician - making it HIPAA compliant - and every update is in real-time. With more than 80% of people willing to use wearable technology, there are immense opportunities in optimizing these devices for medical purposes.
Telemedicine assists physicians with the delivery of patient-care via remote services. It is a beneficial method for patients unable to physically visit their healthcare provider but urgently need support with their medical conditions. Doctors have access to vitals from a distance, like blood pressure, calorie count, heart rate, blood glucose levels, and other forms of data. In real-time, they’re able to assess a patient’s health report and provide immediate care or make alterations in their treatment. Additionally, there are two subset forms of telemedicine: store-and-forward and interactive telemedicine. Store-and-forward allows physicians, with the patients’ permission, to forward data to another medical professional for a review. No longer will patients have to jump through hoops to get a second opinion! Interactive telemedicine allows patients and doctors to communicate with each other via video call or over the phone. In the situation that a patient cannot efficiently meet their doctor, these digital tools are essential for the healthcare industry to thrive.