The digital revolution has made its way to healthcare records, systems, and even procedures as telehealth grows in popularity. These advancements have been vitally important as the world fights a pandemic and where there is unequal access to care.
But just how important will our digitized healthcare system continue to be going forward?
To answer that question, we’ll have to explore why digitized healthcare is essential, how it helps (and doesn’t help), and the potential of these systems in revitalizing and improving care outcomes.
Why Digitized Healthcare is Essential
During the last two years alone, our newly digitized healthcare systems have been instrumental in tracking the COVID-19 virus and its variations and allowing vulnerable patients to receive treatment through telehealth. These features have made a powerful difference in care, providing insight to the epidemiologists and access to doctors for the unwell.
Epidemiology is the study of health as it occurs in populations. Epidemiologists examine the origins of pathogens, track the spread of disease, and make recommendations for better public health outcomes. Without digitized databases available on cloud networks, these professionals would be more limited in their ability to study global spreads.
Digitized healthcare is of monumental importance to mental health care as well. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, for instance, more patients have turned to these platforms for access to treatment. Now, psychotherapy is the number one most common telehealth procedure in the U.S.
The digital revolution of public health has been fueled by mobile devices using cloud infrastructure for data storage and communication. Apps, wearables, Internet of Things (IoT) devices all lead to databases of valuable medical knowledge. Cloud computing holds all this information together and allows for the analysis and application of medical knowledge. Without it, medical professionals could not perform important tasks such as:
- Leveraging the power of artificial intelligence in medical diagnostics
- Securing databases of private medical information
- Using a patient’s wearable device data in crafting personalized care
- Researching new treatments based on data
- Enabling public health warning and monitoring systems
All this is possible with the power of digital records, stored and communicated over cloud networks, and protected through expert AI security measures. By applying these features in treatment plans, healthcare has much to gain.
The Benefits (and Drawbacks) of Digitized Healthcare
In an environment like this, it’s important to consider the benefits of digitized healthcare and how they might influence a cost analysis. Partnering with a cloud computing service can other untold value for any organization, healthcare or otherwise. The best way to get started is to determine the efficiencies and improved communications you hope to achieve for your organization.
Here are just some of the benefits available through digitized and cloud-based healthcare databases:
- Reduced data storage costs
- Easier integration of big data applications
- More collaborative care opportunities
- Enhanced medical research potential
The drawbacks come down to security. Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the rate of cyber-attacks has skyrocketed. Phishing sites alone were up 350% in the first quarter of 2020. For the medical field, these threats are especially prominent given the valuable nature of patient data on the black market.
Some cloud databases are stemming the tide of cybercrime. These systems can achieve greater security by outsourcing the IT infrastructure to dedicated experts with the resources and knowledge to secure, back up, and maintain HIPAA-compliant databases. Thus, the threats from data breaches and ransomware are significantly reduced.
As the use of digital systems only increases, so will their role in the healthcare system. This means greater efficiency and research potential, but it also means a new kind of threat. To continue improving on the potential of advancing digital care, providers must recognize the importance of the digital ecosystem and what it takes to protect it.
The Potential of Advancing Digital Care
One cannot understate the significant impact of our digitized healthcare system. The potential of digital databases for machine learning applications or mobile healthcare apps is limitless. These tools connect patients with personalized medical solutions, expand the availability of care, and cut costs for care facilities. As technology improves, so will the means for saving lives.
Consider the potential of cloud-based services and technologies for your healthcare organization. Adopting these technologies will enhance your ability to adapt to the digital future.