Top Innovations that will revolutionize Healthcare Industry in 2019
Mr.Ashutosh Tiwari, Chairman and Managing Director, Vinoba Bhave Research Institute (VBRI) lists innovations that will create new benchmarks in the Healthcare Industry in 2019.
The year 2018 has been iconic for the global healthcare industry, where medical innovations and various healthcare technologies brought new hope of healthy, disease-free life for everyone. Currently, the global healthcare industry has reached a growth rate of 4.82% (as per researchandmarkets). With new innovations like Nobel award recognized cancer therapies, artificial pancreas, IoMT (Internet of Medical Things), ICT breakthroughs, and drug manufacturing advancements, 2018 has created new foundations to build a better healthcare ecosystem in future. The legacy will continue in 2019 with value-based care supported by Artificial Intelligence, Big Data Science, Blockchains, and Medical R&Ds. Some of the innovations that will create new benchmarks in the Healthcare Industry in 2019 are:
EHRs (Electronic Health Records)
Healthcare for all has been the top of the list of UN’s Sustainable Development Goals as well and this is finally taking the shape of reality with EHRs. The deployment of ICT (Information and Communication Technology) and a series of cloud-based networks have brought almost every area of the globe in one interconnected network, especially benefitting the healthcare penetration across geographies despite all odds. Telemedicine is tapping more people across the globe with EHRs. These cloud-based and blockchain based EHRs have enhanced the efficiency of remote patient monitoring, resolved infrastructure concerns and balanced the doctor-population disparity across the world. Australia is going to be the first nation to avail EHRs for all in 2018. The trend will be followed by many other developed and developing nations including India in 2019. These medical records will be accessed by doctors for more effective treatment of patients.
EHRs have not just facilitated healthcare for the larger population but have also brought alive the concept of precision medicine. This next stage of telemedicine will allow doctors to prescribe treatments based on their complete medical history and genetic understanding. Instead of experimenting with different drugs and drug dosages to monitor and cure diseases (both CDs and NCDs), doctors can analyze the patient’s symptoms, vitals, immunity level, and medicine response with help of EHRs and AI based medical analysis tools to prescribe targeted medicine. In 2019, Precision Medicine will have greater roles in the treatment of NCDs (Non-Communicable Diseases) and Hereditary Diseases like cancer, diabetes, cardiac issues, and others. .
2018 witnessed breakthroughs in retinal treatment through gene therapy and treatment of various other heredity diseases through genomics. Gene editing tools like CRISPR (Clustered, Short Palindromic Repeats, Regularly Interspaced), and other gene makeup technologies, which introduce curative genes through viral vectors for treatment have been successfully developing throughout 2017 and 2018. The year 2019 will be marked with widespread implementation of these gene therapies to cure numerous diseases in different stages of human life – from embryos to matures. Furthermore, these tools will also help in analyzing human genetics and finding cures for various diseases.
The development of ICT in healthcare came along with the threats of cybersecurity, which is a burgeoning issue across the globe. Healthcare industry is more likely to face intrusion attacks in the coming year as well. Hence, cybersecurity has become as important as the implementation of EHRs and healthcare access. Until recently only finance, retail and security sectors were strengthening their cybersecurity systems but the rising threats have given a clarion call to build better healthcare cybersecurity as well. With better IT fortification and new security measures, 2019 will see enormous growth in Telehealth and E-medicine.
AI-powered Equipment and Wearables
AI and ML (Machine Learning) are continually shaping the future of the healthcare industry. With greater investment and collaborative R&Ds, the healthcare sector will become the largest industry for AI-based activities. Robotics and Deep Learning have also eased up a number of surgical procedures including invasive and non-invasive therapies. Pharmaceuticals are also investing greatly in AI-powered equipment in devising medicine with ultra-precision. Apart from AI- enabled health monitors, the cloud-based connection of wearables and smart sensors are also playing a crucial role in health diagnosis and recording vitals. The SaaS/PaaS based digital healthcare models will realize the dream of quality healthcare for everyone across the world in 2019.
Mr.Ashutosh Tiwari, Chairman and Managing Director, Vinoba Bhave Research Institute (VBRI)