Doctors and Patients to Brace for Digital Healthcare

Last modified: January 24, 2021

New technological advancements are bound to disrupt the healthcare industry. Yet, according to the Cape Cod Technology Council, there is a lot of fear surrounding the digital delivery of health services. For one, Dr. Joseph Kvedar said that tech advancements would significantly reduce the one-on-one visits between patients and doctors. 

According to Kvedar, people fear the digitally-driven healthcare system as it has the potential to lessen the bond between providers and patients. To be more specific, due to the increasing use of artificial intelligence and apps to reduce anxiety and stress.

Nevertheless, Kvedar agreed that digital medicine would be able to improve healthcare outcomes by encouraging people to be responsible for their personal health. Additionally, telemedicine can provide quick and efficient healthcare service in case the number of physicians drops. Medical professionals, in fact, can’t be trained fast enough to keep up with the aging population. As such, it was forecasted that there would be a shortage of over 120,000 physicians in the US by 2023. 

Kvedar added that they “don’t really have a choice” but to embrace telemedicine and hope to use computers wisely. According to him, there would be four basic types of digital health care delivery solutions that people should get used to — artificial intelligence, digital therapeutics, remote monitoring, and telehealth. The last two already went mainstream considering that 45% of mental health providers offer video counseling and virtual urgent care services. Meanwhile, several patients are getting used to having their heart health and blood pressure monitored remotely. 

In the end, even though some may still fear this transition to a more “digitized” healthcare, doctors, in general, place a lot of trust in the efficiency and the overall convenience that new technology brings.

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