You may wonder: what’s next for Healthcare Software? Where do we go from where we are at right now?
We hope to reduce waiting times for services thanks to the implementation of artificial intelligence, e.g. by performing at least initial recognition/diagnosis thanks to using AI technology, facilitating access by improving efficiency thanks to the increase in the market of Telemedicine solutions, automating the prescription process, and AI-powered precision drug dosing. We also hope to improve quality through more data-driven, real-time decisions made by doctors based on real-time data from the Medical Internet of Things. Over time, all limitations of Artificial Intelligence that are present today will be effectively eliminated.
One thing many researchers believe is that telemedicine will continue to expand, bringing healthcare to low-income patients and veterans around the world, even those living in developing nations that wouldn’t usually be able to get treatment. Even before COVID, the telemedicine industry had already taken off in some developing countries. Rocket Health, a startup from Uganda that launched in 2012 and since then has been working on transforming the delivery of medical care using technology, offers medical consultation, collection of samples, and delivery of medicines. It has worked splendidly for a decade and after raising 5 million dollars in Series A funding, it is now getting ready to spread its integrated digital health solutions to more regions of East Africa.
Many healthcare providers hope to be a part of a future in which everyone has access to quality care. That is, of course, something that will take a long time to get to, but it is a nice perspective on how the world could change for the better thanks to IoT for healthcare (or IoMT — The Internet of Medical Things), custom healthcare software development, and more.
What is more, research on the usage of AI in the telemedicine sector shows that the inclusion of AI may completely revolutionize healthcare by making remote diagnosis and treatment even more feasible and thus enabling more treatment options. Virtual healthcare and the deployment of predictive analytics, machine learning, and computer vision technologies are already creating change, but it’s only the beginning. We will see much more of this as the adoption of telemedicine solutions spreads rapidly throughout the entire world.
One of the biggest limitations of telemedicine is the fact that it can’t diagnose the patient as thoroughly as a real-life doctor. However, it is believed that the inclusion of AI in the screening process can change that. Not only it can monitor patients during their stay at home the way a doctor can’t, but also if we include it in the screening process it will be able to estimate the severity of a disease with great accuracy.
As of now, there have been a lot of studies conducted on what AI can do for telemedicine and many of them revolve around the subject of AI identifying the condition without the involvement of the doctor. If that happens, we will not only save a significant amount of time and labor for physicians and patients, but we will also be able to diagnose a severe condition faster, which may save many lives in the process.
The additional benefit of telemedicine is that it helps cut the costs of healthcare significantly. We can, for example, observe this cost-cutting benefit in telemedicine services for women in perimenopause and menopause. The newly launched startup, The Cusp, offers the same tests, consultations, and lab work that would cost $500 if administered at a clinic; through telemedicine, the cost is $159. And since this telemedicine solution and the usage of AI are both still in the process of development, with new ideas on how to improve the latter appearing very frequently, one can only expect that in the future all of the branches of medicine will follow in the footsteps of The Cusp in using telemedicine to cut healthcare costs. This would widen the practice and thus help revolutionize the industry even further. This will, of course, increase the need for telemedicine software and custom software development services, which are already very much needed in the healthcare industry.
Telemedicine is the “distribution of health-related services and information via electronic information and telecommunication technologies.” Telemedicine is used to store data about patients and their treatment, and it also enables video and telephone appointments with doctors. Nowadays telemedicine can be seen as a new normal as Healthcare Software Development increased significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Remote delivery of healthcare services became a necessity during this challenging time in which going outside meant exposing oneself to the risks of spreading the disease further. Before COVID-19 it wasn’t as popular to set a remote visit with healthcare providers. It had been used by private healthcare or in emergency situations, but it was nowhere near as popular as now. Software Solutions for Healthcare have not only made seeing a doctor more comfortable as it is no longer required to physically go to the visit, but they have also provided a solution to treating patients without spreading the disease. Telemedicine services offer many benefits both to patients and doctors.
Let’s see what these benefits are and how Healthcare Software Development revolutionizes Healthcare and offers solutions to many problems and difficulties in providing patients with the best care.
We’ve already mentioned some benefits of telemedicine and AI in healthcare. What else can machine learning, deep learning, and artificial intelligence do for healthcare?
For patients, one of the biggest benefits is the fact that they don’t have to drive to a doctor’s office, take time off work for an appointment, or spend money on transportation or childcare during the appointment. And if they are feeling unwell they don’t have to go through the exhausting ordeal of getting out of bed and exposing themselves to the outside world with their immune system already compromised.
More than that, patients who live in rural areas or those who want to connect with specific doctors that have their practice kilometers away now have increased access to medical help. Obtaining specialty services such as mental health treatment or post-surgery follow-up, pre-telemedicine often meant awfully long waiting periods, traveling huge distances, or simply never contacting a doctor because of said distance.
Now it’s easier than ever to take care of your health thanks to interactive telemedicine/telehealth which allows for real-time communication between physicians and patients. Telemedicine appointments, made possible by software such as Appatient - Telemedicine App, include phone conversations or the use of video conferencing software that complies with HIPAA regulations.
Telemedicine healthcare software contributes to lower costs of healthcare, makes things more effective and energy-saving for patients, and thus encourages patients to stay in contact with physicians and monitor their health, which leads to healthier lifestyles.
Telemedicine also allows family members who are caring for their spouses, parents, kids, and so on, to participate in a conversation with a doctor as well, even if they are not in the same area as the patient or doctor.
The information flow between patients’ family members and the medical health providers is especially important in terms of elderly and disabled persons who need assistance. If the family member who’s involved in the care of the patient lives or is temporarily staying out of town or even across the country, telemedicine can loop that family member in on the virtual visit if the patient authorizes it. Then the person can help provide information, ask questions, and take note of the doctor’s answers. What is more, if your doctor is not available, there are systems that can let you get an appointment with the next available practitioner, which also shortens the waiting period for doctor visits.
To sum up, it’s not only convenient and time-saving for a consumer to see and speak to a physician for minor and non-urgent medical needs via phone or video call, but it also takes some heat off Emergency Departments and primary care physician’s offices who can focus on more urgent matters that need stationary medical attention. More about what telemedicine software development has changed for physicians below:
We all realize how exhausting administrative tasks such as storing large files of medical documentation and sorting through it every single day may be. It has also been made completely unnecessary since the creation of custom systems that electronically store all medical information, medical records, medical history of patients, prescriptions, and more. EHR (electronic health record) and EMR (electronic medical record) software development can be adapted and made efficient for each medical field, from dentistry to plastic surgery and even drug rehabilitation centers.
To make it even easier on medical facilities and physicians, store-and-forward systems, also known as asynchronous telemedicine, have been put in place to enable healthcare providers to share patient information such as lab results with other caregivers. This makes it easier both for medical facilities and patients who don’t have to carry files from one doctor to another, especially within the same medical facility. Thanks to this, doctors don’t have to worry about missing information or forgotten prescriptions, which makes diagnosing or prescribing medications less challenging. Electronic health records are reshaping the world of medical diagnosis and improving patient care every day.
Remote patient monitoring is another form of medical care that has revolutionized healthcare because it has allowed for monitoring patients in their homes thanks to using tools such as IoT devices that are controlled by smartphones and are able to collect data about temperature, blood sugar levels, blood pressure, or other vital signs. This definitely helps with quicker diagnosis and improved response to emergency situations, which is also beneficial for patients with long-term diseases and health conditions that need constant monitoring, such as cancer or diabetes. The fact that one can identify a life-threatening situation and report it to a hospital or other medical facility much quicker than a patient would minimalize the risk for such patients.
Because of all the reasons that were mentioned in the section about telemedicine benefits for patients, telemedicine reduces the number of appointment cancellations and no-shows. Health professionals may now reach out to patients beforehand to remind them about their visit, and since it only takes answering the phone or video call, patients are less inclined to call it off. That saves the time that a medical practitioner would usually waste waiting for the patient in the office.
It seems that telemedicine is the solution to many problems that medical facilities face these days. However, one may question its security and effectiveness. Healthcare Software Developers have their task cut out for them when it comes to cybersecurity, but telemedicine proposes solutions to these kinds of issues as well.
As was already mentioned, the medical software industry has been undergoing an extensive shift throughout recent years when it comes to product development. There arose a huge demand for Custom Healthcare Software Development and as the market for it grew, telemedicine software development has created a lot of opportunities for the healthcare industry. However, it hasn’t come without challenges.
The first and perhaps the biggest challenge of Healthcare Software Development is to make the software safe at each stage for both the patients and healthcare providers. Privacy is crucial when it comes to all kinds of software, but it’s even more important in certain industries. Healthcare is one of these industries, in which there is no space for mistakes. Since telemedicine involves electronically transmitting patient data and sharing sensitive information, healthcare software should be unbreakable for hackers.
Studies show that healthcare organizations remain the biggest targets for online criminals and terrorists. The challenge that cybersecurity poses is one that we should be focusing on the most. It takes a certain level of expertise to incorporate cybersecurity solutions and features that will keep the software secure from attacks. That’s why you want to put your trust in experts that are already well-versed in designing such solutions. Profil Software, a company offering Python Development Services, has a huge amount of experience in telemedicine software development, designing IoT based health monitoring systems and creating outstanding solutions for Identity Verification and Authentication, as well as integrating different types of secure payments and payouts into these systems.
Solutions provided by Software Healthcare Developers include safe data sharing that is ensured by online identity verification and the ability to revoke access to shared data at any time. With a proper identity-proofing process, sensitive medical information collected and stored by hospitals, laboratories, pharmacies, and other medical facilities is protected and can only be accessed by real patients.
Integrating verification processes (like ID verification) or introducing solutions such as biometric-based identity verification and authentication that use informed AI makes developed software a more secure investment and increases its value.
The other challenge of Custom Healthcare Software Development is that such software needs to be easily accessible and not too complicated. Training healthcare providers on using such software costs time and money, so it would be preferable for the software to be user-friendly so that there is no need for excessive training. That’s why it’s always good to employ the help of experienced UX/UI Designers to create the best experience for the users, both on the patients’ and doctors’ end. Using UX/UI Design services will ensure that your software will satisfy its users and will also help you understand what exactly your users need from your software. For example, the meeting scheduling solution should be both intuitive and flexible, and the video call option should also be integrated into the app and set for the highest quality possible, to make online appointments as close to face-to-face meetings as possible and make it easier on doctors to evaluate patients’ health through the online conversation.
As you can see, the advancement made in telemedicine software design in recent years plays into the well-being, satisfaction, and comfort of both the patient and healthcare provider. It saves the time and costs involved in providing patients with healthcare and makes physicians’ jobs easier because they can now get real-time status updates on their patients, allowing them to monitor patients more effectively and respond to critical health events quicker. Telemedicine software development gives healthcare providers better access to more complete information on their patients’ health, and it also promotes faster, more regular doctor appointments.