Just like everything else, healthcare is moving toward being digitalized. Today, most of the players in the complex healthcare system are making some efforts toward digital transformation. They are rising to the pressures and challenges of providing better healthcare.
There has never been a better time for this because it will improve the quality of healthcare, especially when it comes to getting access to it.
Although this is a broad overview of what is happening in healthcare as an industry, how does this affect you, either as a patient or a doctor? Let’s take a closer look at the impact it will have on you:
How Digital Medicine is Affecting Patients
Now, you can go to the doctor online, and, if needed, you can also get many prescriptions filled online. The doctor clicks the mouse a couple of times and the order transmits itself to your preferred drugstore
Many of these more personal initiatives on a patient level are being spearheaded by digital health companies. PlushCare, a digital health startup located in San Francisco, is an example of a company on a mission to provide everyone in the United States, regardless of where they live, access to some of the best-trained doctors in the country.
Digital healthcare can make your life as a patient easier in the following ways:
You can skip the waiting room.
Waiting rooms have long been considered a necessary evil. Doctors feel overwhelmed by the number of people waiting for their attention. Staff members work frantically to pacify restless patients in pain who want more immediate attention. And patients are bored to tears waiting for their brief visit with the doctor.
In addition, waiting rooms often harbor patients with infectious diseases. By talking to patients through computer or mobile devices, doctors can diagnose, treat, and prescribe medication obviate the need to keep everyone waiting in the same room.
How would this new model work for you?
- First, you would be able to book an appointment at anytime from anywhere. Neither time nor location are relevant anymore.
- Second, you could visit with the doctor on your smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop. This added level of convenience is very appealing to many people.
- Third, you can pickup your prescription at a pharmacy close to you. If you’re living in a remote area of the country without access to a pharmacy, or you’re bedridden with no one to help you get to a pharmacy, then you can place your order online.
It’s easy to pay for a virtual doctor’s visit.
If you have insurance, then you can simply pay your copay, and if you don’t have insurance, then you’ll simply pay a flat fee, without any hidden charges.
You can be treated for many ailments.
In many cases, a doctor might be able to suggest a course of treatment if you have a milder illness. If medical tests are necessary at a hospital or outpatient lab, then this can all be arranged during the conversation. You might be surprised at what a virtual office visit can diagnose and treat.
You will get access to the top doctors.
In the past, top doctors, those who went to the best schools and who had acquired many years of experience, were not easy to access because of their popularity. As a result, patients would often have to settle for new doctors, those who were either doing internships or had recently completed their medical training. Since digitalized medicine is much more efficient when it comes to time and place, more people can access the help of seasoned physicians.
How Digital Medicine is Affecting Doctors:
Now with the advent of technology giants entering into the health care game, doctors can access digital tools to do a much better job of diagnosis and treatment. According to an article on digital medicine in Wired.com, the FDA is creating a new department and investing resources to help digital diagnostic tools get to market quickly to assist physicians treat their patients more efficiently.
A Higher Quality of Healthcare
By adopting EHR systems as well as many other ancillary systems for this transformation, health care providers are able to enhance patient care, which benefits from improved efficiency, time savings, and higher staff productivity. Moreover, it will reduce the risk of misdiagnosis based on erroneous information in record-keeping.