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How Innovation Is Shaping Healthcare

Healthcare Innovation

“Part of me thinks that innovation, real innovation in healthcare delivery, needs to happen from the bottom to the top. What I don’t know is whether this system encourages that kind of bottom-up innovation or discourages it.”

Malcolm Gladwell, author of David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants believed already in 2014 that the revolution in healthcare must come from patients. Today we see that the world is transforming and innovative technologies are becoming increasingly patient-centric.

Healthcare organizations are looking to infuse innovation that may not have been traditionally created for the healthcare industry, however can still drastically transform it. Innovations in big data, artificial intelligence and blockchain technology particularly have the power to transform the healthcare industry and reshape it completely.

How Healthcare Can Do More with Big Data

Big data, as we’ve said before, is more than just a buzzword – it is a strategic shift in the way companies view, analyze and react to information, and it has the power to drive forward innovation and progress. The healthcare industry is one of the most notable examples of an industry that can be completely transformed due to the integration of big-data innovation.

Traditional healthcare organizations, such as hospitals, insurance companies and more have had the data available to them for many years, yet they are now shifting the way they view the data and exploring new ways to leverage it to the benefit of their patients, impacting the industry and changing it entirely.

Hospitals in Paris are testing out the use of big data to forecast admissions rates in the hopes of improving overall patient experience, hospital efficiency and treatment. Healthcare research facilities can increase their understanding of large epidemic evolution, preventative treatment effectiveness, and more, all thanks to big data analysis.

 

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Big data also plays a critical role in the evolution of the InsurTech industry, with startups using the power of big data to improve fraud detection and risk assessment, focusing on efficient insurance management that is patient focused. As healthcare continues to evolve and big data capabilities grow, the healthcare industry will continue being transformed by the ability to leverage big data in a way that drastically reshapes the industry.

Artificial Intelligence Implementation in Healthcare

Until recently, artificial intelligence (AI) has been vastly used to improve corporate innovation, supply chain management and more. AI innovation also has the power to transform the healthcare industry in many ways from improving patient and doctor pains to overall efficiency.

Zocdoc, which was created to simplify medical appointment booking and management, is leveraging the power of artificial intelligence to ease a critical pain point common to patients, doctors, and their staff – checking insurance coverage.

Healthcare technologies are becoming increasingly patient-centric. Click To Tweet

They are able to do so thanks to the smart use of AI to process the insurance card picture and use that to assess the validity of the insurance policy. Zocdoc also recently took AI one step further and is using it to bridge the gap between patient language and medical terminology with the launch of their patient-powered search feature that improves their ability to recognize patients’ needs and direct them to the relevant healthcare provider.

The use of AI based chatbots is also on the rise, with hospitals increasing their dependency on bots to provide initial customer service solutions, intelligently routing calls and shortening consumer wait time and staff wasted time.

Companies traditionally outside the healthcare space are also recognizing their ability to infuse innovation and transform the industry. Google launched an entire ecosystem of applied AI startups that can transform the healthcare industry and is heavily investing in AI solutions for healthcare organizations.

By seeking AI solutions that reduce time doctors and other healthcare professionals spend on a computer during patient visits, to developing custom treatments for people who lost the ability to walk, these startups aim to completely restructure the way things are done in the industry and will transform the entire healthcare industry.

Blockchain – An Unlikely Game Changer

The disruptive distributed ledger technology offers a brand-new model of information exchange with increased security, privacy and interoperability – all of which are crucial in healthcare. Because of this natural need, and the wide range of applications blockchain has, it is quickly becoming an unlikely game-changing innovative tool for the healthcare industry.

Blockchain is becoming an unlikely game-changer in the healthcare industry. Click To Tweet

Startups such as SimplyVital are already showcasing this by using blockchain to launch two separate healthcare innovations: ConnectingCare, which aims to improve time management and financial forecasting for hospitals, and Health Nexus which seeks to digitize medical records through blockchain.

While other companies are looking to blockchain to improve health record management, improve supply chain management of drugs and more, blockchain still has a long way to go before disrupting the healthcare industry. It is, however, one of the few technologies that really can reshape the entire industry.

What needs to happen before that is for someone to build the first blockchain based health care platform – a feat that may bring into question the need to standardize or nationalize healthcare, or at least drastically increase collaboration between the different healthcare bodies.

The Unstoppable Rise of Innovation in Healthcare

While blockchain, AI and big data are already reshaping the healthcare industry, other innovations are slowly making their mark on the rapidly changing industry. 3D printing is already improving efficiency and reducing costs from simplifying prosthetic creation, on-site medical equipment printing, tumor modeling and more. InsurTech is continuing to rise, and with it, the tools patients and healthcare providers will have to improve the quality of the patient experience and reduce the associated healthcare costs.

As technology continues to generate flexible, future-ready solutions, and as these solutions are adopted in the multifaceted healthcare industry, labor will become more and more productive, administrative costs will decrease, patients and governments will become more aware, and a growing number of diseases will become a thing of the past – or at least managed successfully.

In many instances, what was once only imagined is already a reality in the vast healthcare industry, and the future is still being shaped.

For more on how healthcare is moving forward, check out Digitizing the Healthcare Industry for Patients

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