Healthcare is one of today’s hottest topics, partially due to the fact that the baby boomer generation is aging to the point of needing healthcare. With over 70 million Americans encompassing this generation it’s no wonder that healthcare is a booming industry. Advances in the healthcare industry have accelerated exponentially with some trends emerging as the leaders of healthcare change.
Keep your information in the clouds – Patient information theft is one of the largest concerns in technology today. Unfortunately some healthcare providers see storing information remotely as the bigger threat when in fact; more information is obtained illegally by hacking into a healthcare provider’s server, stealing laptops with information stored on hard drives, flash drives or memory keys. Storing information in the cloud is more secure and will provide better patient protection now and in the future.
Telemedicine – Every time a patient walks into a doctor’s office there is a charge incurred. With the costs of healthcare rising every year it’s no wonder that patients prefer to connect with their physician remotely rather than incur the cost of an office visit. Telemedicine will not be free, but the costs can be lower than that of a traditional office visit. Telemedicine will encompass a variety of technology such as email, smart phones, video conferencing and other forms of wireless communication to enable healthcare to move into your own home. Delivering clinical services remotely is patient friendly and is usually covered by private insurance, Medicare and Medicaid.
Workplace Wellness – More employers are seeing the benefits of providing their employees with the opportunity to improve their health. Whether it’s providing a gym at work, giving wearable devices that track health, or promoting social forums that encourage a healthy lifestyle employers are seeing less absenteeism, and healthy, happy employees.
Transparency of Prices – With the changes in healthcare laws more individuals are paying out of pocket for healthcare costs than ever before. These individuals are demanding to know what exactly they are paying for and why. This is forcing more competition for the almighty healthcare dollar, and doctors and hospitals are being made to keep their spending down in order to see profits.
Health systems will consolidate – Instead of the satellite type system we work with today providers of healthcare such as pharmacies, doctors, chiropractors, etc. will find themselves consolidating services in one location in order to lower costs. No longer will you drive to the doctor, and then have to drive across town to get your prescription filled. One stop shopping for all your healthcare needs will be the wave of the future and in fact is occurring now in some areas of the country.
The healthcare industry is going through some major changes that will benefit us all in the long run. With thousands entering the healthcare system every day healthcare providers will find themselves in higher demand than ever before. They will also find their patients expecting more services and value for every healthcare dollar spent.