Envisioning the Future of Healthcare
Proliferation of sensors, access to high speed internet, and many devices connected to it, advancement in analytical tools, cheap processing power and computing on distributed environment will provide a great service for humans. Especially, I see that the following disruption to healthcare practice will happen in the near future.
In the upcoming years, Healthcare Analytics & Big Data capabilities that will have a huge impact on the following ecosystem. My intuition revolves around this ecosystem, including, Patients, Health Care providers (Doctors, Surgeon, Nurse etc.), Health care Insurance Companies, Pharmaceutical Companies, Medical Equipment Manufacturing Companies, Pharmacies and Clinical Trial R&D Companies.
Every patient health information details are recorded in EHR/EMR. These systems are integrated across own chain of hospitals and other health care providers. Insurance companies are already having access to how their customers are being prescribed by a medical practitioner. This helps to reimburse the service providers cost, only if the treatments are effective and thus improving the standard of medical practice, avoiding pharmaceutical companies lobbying. Pharmaceutical Companies are forced to do a better R & D and bring the drug to the market only if it is at par.
The contents mentioned in the above is already happening. Now let’s get into a scenario where already few things are happening along with my own imagination and intuition pertaining to the key players from the ecosystem
Patients will be capable of accessing their medical records through smart phone apps. There will also be sensors that measures the blood pressure, heart rate, sugar testing (Infra-red detection of glucose level, research is going on), urine/stool sample test at home and upload the data via smart phone apps. Better coordination between the medical practitioner and patients by booking appointments based on doctors average consulting time, thus reducing the patient wait time at health care center. Patients can get a better medical care because of the systems and data that are connected/shared across the world for therapeutics of known and unknown diseases. Overall, the standard of patients will be improved.
Health Care Providers
Imagine, a patient walk pass through the medical center’s entrance gate, equipped with sensors, that has biometric scans to identify the person and notify the respective doctors and physicians of their arrival and auto updates the EHR details reducing front end assistant jobs. In case of MRI scans and X-Rays are required, will be auto scheduled based on their departments queue. Doctors has a better consolidated view of the patient history, machine learning algorithms that use huge amount of data to suggest the treatment options that better suits the individuals. Doctors can also analyze huge volume of data on their patients and see where they need to improve the service to meet the patient needs.
These companies will be forced to do a far better job than they are doing today to improve the drug effectiveness and cost effective approach based on the data analyzed. Since, doctors will prescribe medicines based on the effectiveness of a drug, in turn, insurance companies will pay only for the effectiveness of a treatment based on that drug. Hence the standard for drug manufacturing is improved
Patient medical records along with the data that will be captured for treatment on drug effectiveness will help insurance companies focus on how effective the drugs are, and save millions of dollars in reimbursement.
Medical Equipment Manufacturers
These manufacturers will have a huge business in terms of manufacturing the devices equipped with sensors, track the data, analyze the data and make better decisions to improve their capabilities
R&D Clinical Trials
Consider a genome sequencing that costs millions of USD a decade ago now reduced to less than 2500 USD. This can be used effectively in finding new drugs for cancer based on customized treatment options to a specific cancer patient. Sharing these data from different cancer R&D across the world, will provide the researcher, a huge database that can be used for finding a cure in the near future using data analysis techniques.
All the items mentioned above will definitely become true in the coming years with more emphasis on patient information security and privacy. Let us create a world where people get a better treatment in a cost effective way for any disease.
May God Bless Data!!! Analytics!!! And Patients!!!
-Posted on behalf of Maheshkumar ( Project Manager – 4i Apps)