We have seen some remarkable changes and advances in medicine that has improved society as we know it. People are living longer, better, and healthier lives, owing to the fact that modern medicine has aided them. However, medicine is constantly evolving, and over the next ten years, we are likely to see even more changes take place that could shape the future of modern medicine for the better. This could be a future that focuses on prevention, prediction, and longevity – all through enhanced technology.
Technology has already given us electronic health records, 3D printing, and mobile apps that allow patients to track their overall health and well-being. It is likely that technology is only going to play a bigger and better role over the next 10 years and more. Many experts suggest that the future will be shaped by robotics and telemedicine. However, just how would this technology benefit society?
What is telemedicine?
Telemedicine first originated and developed in the US as a way to provide health care to those who lived in remote rural areas.
What is robotics?
As the name suggests, this is technology in the form of a robot. The medical industry used the first medical robotic in 1985. This has since developed, and in 2010, the first surgery was carried out in the US by robots.
Why is this considered the future of medicine?
Over the years, both telemedicine and robotics have evolved and improved and will continue to do so. Why? Experts and researchers can see the number of benefits that these two areas of technology can bring not just to patients, but also to doctors, nurses, and healthcare workers in general. They truly believe that this could be the future of modern medicine. Therefore, we have put together the benefits that we are already seeing from health care practices that are implementing telemedicine and robotics.
What are the benefits to patients?
First of all, we will take a look at the benefits that patients will gain:
Home care and homebound care for patients
There are currently 3.6 million people that are considered housebound, due to disabilities, mobility issues, long term illnesses, and more. For these 3.6 million people, it is not possible to get to the healthcare practice or hospital, nor is it possible for healthcare workers to perform at home visits like we would have done 60 years ago. The huge number of people makes this impossible. However, with telemedicine, this would completely change the game for many. As explained on Xyonix, parents would be able to find answers to their questions regarding their child’s health, and AI would empower the patient and provide real-time data. With advances, doctors and nurses would be able to conduct checkups and provide diagnosis’ without the patient leaving their home effortlessly.
Faster recovery times
As mentioned above, the first surgery was carried out by a robot in 2010. Since then, there have been over 3,00,000 robotic-assisted surgeries. The reason why is because it offers a range of benefits to patients, including faster recovery times. Compared to undergoing open surgery, robotic-assisted surgeries can result in less pain and discomfort, too, as well as reduced blood loss and minimal scarring.
Can access more physicians
Utilizing telemedicine will mean that patients can communicate with top specialists that they wouldn’t have otherwise come across. For those that live in rural areas, they can now reap the same benefits that someone would who lives in the center of the city. The convenience would stop travel and allows them to see the top doctor for a diagnosis.
What are the benefits for healthcare practices?
Just as there are benefits to the patients, so are there to the healthcare practices:
Efficient cleaning can be carried out
As robotics develops, this could bring several advantages to how efficient the healthcare practice or hospital is. Robots can use UV light, for example, to sterilize a room and hospital bed. What this does is two things: reduces infection by cleaning, but also frees up a member of staff to attend to patients in need.
Carrying out basic surgical procedures
Surgeons play a huge role in medicine, but robotics can aid them massively. Robotic arms can carry out basic surgical procedures with the help of a physician. This minimizes shaky arms and nerves and means that surgeons with specialist knowledge don’t need to choose between two patients. The robot can help deal with basic procedures freeing up the time for specialist surgeries.
Doctors can learn more about their patients
One huge benefit that doctors are already seeing by conducting video conferencing is that their patients are a lot more open. They will ask honest questions more so than they would in the surgery face to face with their doctor. This open honesty allows doctors to fully understand the patient’s condition and puts them in a much better position to solve it.