starts to become more personalised and moving into patients’ homes, technology transforms home care in the forms of mobile technology and remote monitoring, to name a few, and have become the cornerstone of home care. Everyone, not just doctors or healthcare professionals have access and capabilities to use these technologies. The democratisation of healthcare tools has been incredibly successful in alleviating pressure from the healthcare system.
Right now, we are seeing an aging population crisis that is coupled with a decline of physicians and nurses that will put a massive strain on the healthcare system. It has become increasingly important to innovate and use the technological developments that are constantly occurring in this industry to keep up with the growing demand for its services. We created a list of how technology transforms home health care and how to best use them to improve your quality of life.
Active Vs. Passive Technologies
The technologies can be broken down to two categories, Active or Passive. Active technologies require an individual to be trained to operate and use the device. Passive is the opposite; these are technologies that are mainly for monitoring that do not require extensive training in order to operate it. All of the technologies below fall in either one or both of these categories that helped transform home care.
Physiological monitors today have become mobile. Health care professional can now measure more and more accurately physiological systems from the comfort of the patient’s home. This has made regular check-ups much more convenient for those who have trouble travelling outside their home.
Passively, there are now apps that even the patient themselves monitor their own health. There are FDA approved health appsthat can be easily and freely downloaded for tracking heart rate, blood glucose, pain, sleep restlessness and symptoms. This can come in the form of wearable technology, access to electronic health records, and manually tracked info. This information can be shared and monitored with your doctor and your family.
Scheduling and Medication Administration
Calendar apps and reminders are simple ways to make sure that people take their medication on time. However, technology transforms health care by making it easier for everyone to keep track of their medication intake using free mobile apps. Also, there are apps that contain information of your medicationwith clever ways to organise and maximise safety to avoid medication mix-ups.
Live GPS monitoring can be used for more than revealing someone’s location, and has become especially useful in the homecare industry. Wandering patients are a very real concern for caregivers and family members alike. Constant monitoring is taxing and uncomfortable for everyone. But with GPS monitoring, users can set up “geofences” that will alert caregivers and other users when clients wander too far from home. This helps both parties live more independent lives while passively giving everyone a peace of mind.
Telehealthis growing quickly as doctors and health care professionals learn to trust digital information sharing and communication technologies. For those who have embraced this technology, patients are able to have meetings and checkups with their doctor faster and more often. Some practices use their own websites while others use current direct messaging apps and technologies already available.
While this certainly does not replace in-person visits to the doctor, it surely does allow for a greater dialogue between patient and doctor, further establishing trust and building a personal relationship with someone who is monitoring something as important as your health.
Cloud Technology And Electronic Health Records (EHRs)
EHRs have now made it easier to transfer important medical records between doctors, specialists, and patients. Before, it would take days or up to weeks for doctors to send or transfer important patient records such as past medication history, treatment history, allergies, and other important anecdotes. Not only does this speed up diagnosing and treatment but EHRs open the door to a plethora of other opportunities for doctors and patients.
EHRs can be used to track patient health trends and automate manual tasks of observing, recording, and reporting. Not only does this speed up the process for this patient, but all other patients as the doctor can now spend more time concentrating of higher-level diagnostics and treatment, rather than tracking patients.
The Future is Here
These are some of the ways how technology transforms home care, but it is important to note that these are not meant to replace the expertise and complete services of health care professionals, but to help support them. The goal of these technologies is to improve the quality of life of the patients primarily, by either making them feel more independent, create transparency with the medical reports, establish a regular dialogue with healthcare professionals, and improving the healthcare system overall. The technology is here, however, it is up to everyone in the industry to learn and embrace this technology.