A short while ago, Bolidt invited stakeholders from the healthcare sector to come and share their latest insights. It was an opportunity to collectively look to the future of the industry. The gathering was followed by a tour of the revolutionary Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam. Bolidt’s own Maidy Wensveen turned everyone’s attention to the question; what will healthcare of the future look like? There was a unanimous conclusion that technology will completely change healthcare as we know it.
How does the eradication of waiting rooms sound? Well, according to John Ouburg from Wagenbouw, an attendee of the event, very soon consultations will be taking place via Facetime or Skype. Rather than heading to the hospital or clinic and stuffing into a crowded lobby, you could simply receive a notification on your smartphone when the appointment is to take place. It seems that more and more information will be available to share in this manner.
For instance, a team of Stanford grad students have produced an algorithm that could replace face to face diagnosis. With a single image, taken from a smartphone, this software can distinguish between malignant and benign (dangerous and not dangerous) skin conditions. So, it seems that in the future we may even be able to receive much of the consultation process simply through our own devices.
Whilst the image of a robot yielding a surgical knife might not be the most pleasant idea to a lot of us, it could soon be a usual procedure. Already robots are being utilized for their physical precision in the surgery sector. daVinci is a robot that greatly assists surgeons to this end. The surgeon remains in complete control throughout the process, but with daVinci’s greater flexibility and reach, smaller incisions can be made with more precision. The surgeon sits at a control unit where they can view the operation and control the equipment remotely. Despite the reluctancy that you might feel, over this many people have already undergone successful operations with the DaVinci machine.
Alex Jansen, director of Interflow, adds that augmented reality will most likely play a significant role in healthcare in the nearby future. This way, surgeons on the other side of the world can tune in during an operation, or even check up on patients from a distance.
With more than two million operations worldwide performed by about 3,000 daVinci surgical robots, it seems that this will only become more common
In every industry, tablets seem to be revolutionizing the system, and it’s no different in healthcare. Mabu is a robot with a tablet interface that deals with some of the major problems we face in the healthcare system of today. It can monitor your health and remind you when to take your medication, whilst relaying and sending encrypted information to and from your doctor. The orders still come from doctors themselves, but these little helpers fulfill a caring role that is in dire need in today’s world.
Wearable technology can also be seen transforming the landscape of healthcare before our very eyes. With the use of technologies like Google Glass, surgeons can look at CT scans and X-ray images without having to leave the operating room. Already we can see huge companies pairing with the healthcare sector to drive technology in the way of efficiency for doctors and patients. Samsung recently announced that it is switching its focus from robots to wearable healthcare technology.
One example of a breakthrough innovation in wearable technology is the Zephyr Anywhere’s BioPatch. After being placed on a patient’s chest, it monitors their vital organs minute-by-minute whilst collecting medical-grade data. Not only can this save hospitals money, but it can also save the patient the stress of going in and out of hospital. Once a patient leaves hospital, doctors are notified of any dangerous changes. Whilst wearable technology may still be in its growth stages, there’s a definite shift as even standard watches become health monitoring systems.
Our expedition into the future of healthcare left us feeling inspired and excited for the years to come. We’re seeing the first signs of a technological revolution that will shift the industry as we know it. Big thanks to everyone involved!Ask a question
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