The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the need for digital healthcare solutions around the world. Dr. Hans Kluge, Regional Director for WHO in Europe has said: “COVID-19 has given impetus for countries to accelerate the adoption of digital health.” In the WHO European Region, 30 out of 53 countries had implemented some sort of COVID-19 contact tracing mechanism.
Similar accounts have been presented by Dr. Paivi Sillanaukee, DG Ministry of Social Affairs and Health in Finland, and the Federal Ministry of Health, Germany. In fact, the latter reported that the percentage of doctors offering video consultations went from 2–7% before COVID to 60%.
These changes show that further advancements are in store for digital health in 2021. With the pandemic still going on, there is a huge need to deliver healthcare to as many people as possible.
Digital Health Trends to Watch Out for in 2021
Tech is transforming healthcare around the world today in more ways than one. Not only has the ubiquity of smartphones and digital devices influenced patient care, but patients themselves have influenced digital healthcare development.
1. Patients Want Healthcare On-Demand
If nothing else, COVID-19 has shown the world the effectiveness of digital solutions from payments to retail. Healthcare is no different. The majority of US residents have access to laptops, smartphones, or some sort of digital device, they’re accustomed to receiving things on-demand. Healthcare should be no different in the future.
Patients should have access to healthcare when they need it in the form of consultations, therapy, care, etc. Examples include Nomad Health which links doctors with medical facilities.
This means that the demand for the development of functional and convenient Doctor-patient portals and apps, telemedicine apps, integrations of chats and video calls, and more extended functionality will grow in 2021.
2. Big Data is Now Intertwined with Healthcare
Data is the new oil; you may have heard this phrase repeatedly in the news lately. It’s true. Big Data can serve patients well. Recording vitals, streaming live data, and recording irregularities in a patient’s condition can help treat them.
Not just that, Big Data can help identify similarities in patients’ conditions which can lead to preventive care. This can potentially save millions of lives and allow us to learn orders of magnitude more about the human body.
3. VR Healthcare Treatments
While AR and VR are mostly advertised as a tech for gaming and entertainment, it has various applications in healthcare. VR headsets have been identified as useful devices to treat PTSD, stroke, and anxiety.
This could help treat people without the need for opioids or painkillers and alleviate the addiction crisis in the US. This could be a boon to the 50 million adults suffering from opioid addiction. The market cap of headsets for VR, while concentrated towards gaming and entertainment currently, is predicted to reach $5.1 billion by 2025.
4. Increasing Number of Wearable Medical Devices
The wearable medical device market is expected to reach a valuation of $27 million by 2023. That’s a great increase from $8 million in 2017. These include heart rate sensors, exercise trackers, and oximeters. Even sweat meters, used for monitoring blood sugar levels are being marketed extensively to diabetics. This is a boon for digital healthcare solutions worldwide.
That doesn’t even include the wearables that are specifically catered to the general public including Fitbits and Apple Watches. That valuation is supposed to reach $88.7 billion by 2027. The sheer number of wearables out there in the coming years will ensure that mountains of data are available for healthcare research. This will require several companies to adopt systems that can not only store that data but analyze it for insights.
5. AI and Automation Is Becoming a Major Factor in Healthcare Provision
A Deloitte Survey of 680 primary care and specialty US Physicians shows the potential impact of digital healthcare. 73% of US Physicians say that AI will provide a major benefit when it comes to saving time and resources in healthcare. 77% have said that automation will improve efficiency both in healthcare provision and billing and reporting.
Popular Healthcare Apps
There is a rising industry of apps for digital health in 2021. These are some of the most effective apps and services that doctors around the world are using today.
This popular WhatsApp messenger service is a HIPAA compliant healthcare app. It allows patients to connect with their doctors and health specialists on a single platform. This app helps patients to receive fast responses with regards to their health concerns.
Patients can effectively avoid the waiting room and have their questions answered on a virtual platform. They can also receive refills for their prescriptions. It’s a great app for physicians too because provides time-saving features and allows consultations with a greater number of patients.
2. Mobile MIM
This app shares images from radiation oncology, radiology, nuclear medicine, neuroimaging, and cardiac imaging. It’s intended to assist physicians when accessing image scans and consulting with peers on cases.
3. Gauss Pixel
Gauss Pixel can provide nurses and doctors accurate readings of blood loss during surgical procedures. It works by taking images of surgical sponges used during the surgeries. This is a service that is seriously absent from healthcare since nurses typically estimate blood loss during surgeries.
4. AirStrip ONE
This app acts as a diagnostic aid to deliver patient data from medical devices/electronic medical records/patient monitors. It shows doctors everything they need in a single view. Information provided includes vital signs, allergies, medications, etc.
5. OptiBP by Biospectal
This is an app that uses a smartphone camera and your fingertip to calculate blood pressure. The software has achieved an accuracy of the ISO 81060–2 standard. This is a revolution in measuring and managing high blood pressure.
How Developex Can Improve Digital Healthcare Services
Developex provides specialized software and firmware development services for companies in digital healthcare. Our work doesn’t simply focus on business software but extends to IoT devices, fitness, health wearables, etc.
Moreover, we can assist with the development of doctor-patient portals, Web and cloud-based dashboards for data analytics, companion mobile apps for health and well-being devices, complex cross-platform solutions, and nice-looking UI/UX.
At Developex, we offer services for a full software development life cycle. We provide IT staffing/outstaffing with a team of 2–15 developers. This ensures custom software development to serve your needs and the needs of your customers.
So what are you waiting for? Sign up for Developex health monitoring software development today.
Hope you enjoyed reading this article. We will highly appreciate any comments regarding it. If you struggle to find a perfect match for your development team — don’t hesitate to contact us: email@example.com — If you have software development plans for 2021 — feel free to discuss them with us.