Advancements in technology are revolutionizing the healthcare industry, making quality healthcare more accessible to people worldwide.
From virtual consultations to wearable devices, innovative solutions are bridging the gap between patients and healthcare providers.
According to Statista, 533.6 million total wearable devices were shipped in 2021, this number includes wearables, watches, wristbands, and other wearables.
The report also shows 253 million smartwatch shipments were made worldwide and it is forecasted that this will grow to over 253 million units by 2025.
People in underdeveloped countries already struggle to pay for the most basic healthcare services due to their unbalanced economic conditions.
Making use of these cutting-edge tech-based solutions for improving human life can be their optimal use, given the continual presence of technology in nearly everything around us.
This article explores how technology is reshaping healthcare accessibility, improving convenience, efficiency, and outcomes for patients.
Virtual consultations have emerged as a game-changer in healthcare accessibility.
With telemedicine platforms and video conferencing tools, patients can connect with healthcare professionals remotely, eliminating geographical barriers and reducing the need for in-person visits.
One African Company that is doing great from this perspective is Zuri Health a provider of an online teleconsultation & appointment booking platform for multiple diseases
Another platform that offers virtual consultation called BYON8 who are our members at Nairobi Garage // Spring Valley. The platform offers virtual consultations for symptoms instantly, allows you to learn more about what’s causing them, and offers recommendations. From tip to toe – headache to a bruise on your toe, BYON8 got you covered.
This technology allows patients in remote areas or with limited mobility to receive expert medical advice, diagnosis, and follow-up care without the need for extensive travel.
Virtual consultations also improve healthcare efficiency by reducing waiting times and allowing doctors to see more patients in a day. It is particularly beneficial for non-emergency situations, routine check-ups, and chronic disease management.
Patients can easily schedule appointments, discuss symptoms, receive prescriptions, and access their medical records online, all from the comfort of their homes.
The rise of mobile health applications, or mHealth apps, has empowered individuals to take control of their health and well-being.
These apps offer a wide range of functionalities, such as monitoring vital signs, tracking fitness activities, managing medication adherence, and providing access to medical information and resources.
mHealth apps enable users to proactively manage their health by providing personalized insights and reminders.
For example, individuals with chronic conditions like diabetes can track their blood glucose levels, receive alerts for medication dosage, and share real-time data with their healthcare providers for remote monitoring and timely interventions.
These apps empower patients to actively participate in their care, leading to better treatment outcomes and improved overall health.
Wearable devices, including smartwatches, fitness trackers, and biosensors, are becoming increasingly popular and have a significant impact on healthcare accessibility.
These devices monitor various health parameters such as heart rate, sleep patterns, and physical activity, and even detect abnormalities in vital signs.
By continuously collecting data, wearable devices provide individuals with valuable insights into their health and well-being.
They can help identify potential health risks, encourage behavior changes, and promote preventive measures.
Additionally, these devices enable healthcare professionals to remotely monitor patients, detect early warning signs, and intervene promptly when necessary.
Wearables also contribute to clinical research and population health studies by collecting real-time data on a large scale.
This information can be invaluable for identifying trends, developing personalized treatment plans, and advancing medical knowledge.
Artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics have the potential to revolutionize healthcare accessibility by improving diagnosis accuracy, predicting disease outcomes, and streamlining healthcare processes.
AI-powered algorithms can analyze large amounts of medical data, including medical records, imaging scans, and genetic information, to provide insights and support clinical decision-making.
AI-based diagnostic tools can aid in the early detection of diseases, especially in resource-constrained areas with limited access to specialists.
In Kenya, companies like AfyaRecord, a provider of AI and blockchain-based patient data managing software are one of the companies doing great work.
Additionally, data analytics can identify patterns and trends, enabling healthcare providers to optimize resource allocation, predict disease outbreaks, and develop targeted interventions.
Technology is reshaping healthcare accessibility by breaking down barriers and empowering patients.
From virtual consultations that connect patients with healthcare professionals regardless of location to wearable devices and AI-powered solutions that provide personalized insights, technology holds immense potential to improve healthcare outcomes and make quality care accessible to all.