There are very few areas of day-to-day life that have escaped being transformed by the rapid developments in technology over the past few years. The healthcare sector is already well known for being an early adopter of new ways of doing things, simply because any advances that can help people combat or recover from illness should be implemented as soon as they are proven to be safe.
The healthcare sector has always been at the forefront of advances in tech, whether that has applied to the way in which treatments are discovered or how they are actually applied to patients. However, in recent years things have changed dramatically, with many new systems being made available for both the diagnosis and ongoing treatment that can mean many more lives are saved, longer life spans are achieved and populations are healthier than ever before.
Revolution not evolution
In the past, medical procedures and knowledge have tended to evolve, building on previous discoveries and experiences to come to new understandings of how to achieve best results. In the recent era of the digital age, this has sped up to become a true revolution. Many areas of surgery in particular have seen dramatic improvements, both in terms of the speed with which procedures can be carried out and in the way that recovery times of patients have been shortened.
One of the best examples of this in action is in the field of eye surgery. Many operations that used to carry risks and a tendency to need long periods of recovery are now carried out as routine day surgery procedures. Take cataract eye surgery as a case in point – today the precision methodology involved means success rates are so impressive that patient confidence is unsurprisingly at an all-time high. This is just one example of the way in which new methods have brought benefits to patients, with very real positive effect.
It is early days for treatments or diagnosis to be delivered through a smartphone or a laptop, but this type of digital interaction is already changing the face of clinical practice and therapy. By creating platforms for people to connect with peers and share their experience, as well as to access health professionals remotely, a new blend of supervision and treatment is likely to form the basis of the way that much of the healthcare sector operates in the future.
With even greater advances just around the corner, this is one revolution that shows no signs of slowing down. New technologies based on artificial intelligence (AI) systems will mean that doctors will take on more of a supervisory role, as more of the actual ‘hands on work’ is carried out by robots that will learn and adapt faster than humanly possible. These ‘smart’ systems will be capable of understanding a wide range of health issues and complicated diseases, so that specializations for medical personnel may even become a thing of the past.