Health

Cody Moxam’s Favorite Healthcare Predictions of 2019

The healthcare industry is ever-changing, but trends and developments from 2018 indicate what may come in 2019. Of course, there is a blend of good and bad news; healthcare is a tumultuous and terrifying place where there are new treatments for various ailments and where some people are forced to crowdfund their own surgeries to survive. Biochemistry student at the University of Dallas, Cody Moxam, owner of codymoxam.com, lists five noteworthy healthcare predictions that the world could see in the coming year:

1) AI will become more commonplace

Artificial intelligence has been around longer than most people realize. While it once seemed like science fiction, it has various applications that healthcare professionals are leveraging to make life easier for themselves and their patients. AI can help doctors perform impossible tasks for humans, collect data more rapidly than standard systems, and help people take charge of their own health. It could even collect research data in real-time, predict events like disease outbreaks, and provide recommendations for containing them.

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Reenita Das from Forbes predicts that healthcare IT’s AI market will surpass $1.7 billion by the end of 2019. Das also notes that operational AI in specific healthcare workflows will improve productivity by 10 to 15 percent over the next two to three years. It may still be long before AI is truly commonplace—and it’s necessary to make it more affordable for both patients and professionals—but the industry will undoubtedly use it more frequently.

2) Some treatments will be more individualized

On a related note, technology could make some treatments unique to patients. Larry Mickelberg, managing director at Deloitte Digital, says that while existing smart homes enable people to adjust their thermostats remotely, switch lights, and set alarms, it can go further:

“Cycle that forward to a connected bathroom where the mirror and other tech-enabled appliances process, detect, and analyze health info. Highly attuned sensors embedded in a bathroom mirror scan body temperature and blood pressure or track skin health and detect anomalies by comparing to a person’s historic biometric data. Maybe this smart mirror even displays a skincare tutorial video or a cold and flu forecast, along with a reminder to refill a prescription and a coupon for your digital wallet.”

Mickelberg believes that advances in technology will make enable healthcare to be more home-based. How affordable such options will be and how quickly such possibilities will be implemented are yet to be seen.

3) Software will become more doctor-friendly

Medical professionals frequently bemoan how health systems are not user-friendly and make electronic administration a burden. Fortune is confident that electronic health records companies will make doctor’s user experience a top priority in 2019. They also predict that innovations, such as machine learning and voice interfaces, will make these systems more effective and comprehensive than ever before.

For instance, Google and smaller startup companies are making efforts to create voice technology that minimizes typing errors and reduces hassle when searching for patient records. Voice-based systems will also help medical professionals because the context is more explicit, and systems can better predict scientific terminology.

4) There will be shifts in the supply chain

2019 will see innovations in medical supply chain management—such as blockchain technology. Blockchain is a transparent and public digital ledger that makes data recorded over its distributed and decentralized network open to all relevant parties. This unprecedented transparency could help trace pharmaceutical origins to combat counterfeit drugs, improve medical data transfer, enable broader global communication for research, and authenticate data and documents. Supply chains will hopefully move more smoothly when each step is recorded for people to see.

5) HSAs will rise

Health Savings Accounts are interesting alternatives to 401(k) accounts. Some claim that they are even better because contributions are tax-deductible: Benefits Pro notes that HSA benefits make the invested dollar value worth 30 percent more than a dollar invested in a 401(k) account for an owner at the age of 65. However, other experts note that while HSAs are beneficial for people with limited medical expenses before retirement, people who have medical issues before retirement age might not have sufficient funds. Also, you might be subject to penalties if you withdraw funds for non-qualified reasons. Investopedia provides valuable insight into how an HSA might be advantageous or impractical for you, but it is expected that they will become more common in 2019.

Changes in the healthcare world are hard to predict. Still, if 2018 is any indication, new technology aims to revolutionize the practice of medicine, but they cannot do much without affordability and accessibility, which remain critical issues. What are your favorite healthcare projections for the new year?

About author

I work for WideInfo and I love writing on my blog every day with huge new information to help my readers. Fashion is my hobby and eating food is my life. Social Media is my blood to connect my family and friends.
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