How the Healthcare Industry is Being Transformed by Automation, Robotization And Data Management
July 17, 2018
Over the last few years, various industries across the globe have been transformed by the Midas touch of artificial intelligence (AI) and this appears to be taking newer leaps in the time to come. Healthcare industry holds no exception.
Healthcare delivery and patient experience are setting new benchmark each day, thanks to the intervention of technology in every nook and corner of the medical field. Among several introductions of technology, automation, robotics and healthcare analytics hold the top places in the priority list of healthcare providers today.
Their application has facelifted the entire healthcare sector and besides enhancing productivity and quality, it has been saving the global healthcare industry millions of dollars each year. What is more impressive is that it shows no signs of slowing down as we move further.
So let us take a look at each of their applications and the major benefits associated with them.
Automation or Robotic Process Automation (RPA) has become a range in the healthcare corridor today due to its application largely in streamlining operations and boosting business efficiencies.
Empowered with AI and machine learning capabilities, automation has started to take up numerous mundane, repetitive, tedious and high-volume tasks in clinic and hospitals such as query responses, data-entry, record management etc. These tasks were handled by human medical staff in past.
Besides, the automation software is smart enough to adapt quickly. With a proper planning and design and healthcare information management, it can be trained to learn and correct itself an respond to patient queries without the need for a human intervention. Not only does this minimize the scope of human errors in operations but also frees up the human resource to focus on more complex and strategic responsibilities.
Below are a few major areas where RPA is bringing about transforming reforms in the healthcare industry:
- ◙ Billing processes prior to, during and post-treatment are high-volume activities which keep the human staff glued to their desks. Thankfully, RPA has started to perform these tasks smoothly and with an unprecedented efficiency.
- ◙ AI is making it far more convenient today to monitor the entire care cycle of the patient. With a meticulous record of the patient profile, RPA can monitor the health progress and offer more accurate treatment options.
- ◙ RPA has been able to optimize claim management process in hospitals. It can efficiently handle and process the claim and enhance the patient experience.
- ◙ Whether it is medical record maintenance, claim management, health monitoring, and suggestions, data entry, RPA cuts down time and effort taken on the tasks significantly and results in considerable cost savings for the healthcare providers.
- ◙ Additionally, RPA can also be used to streamline and even optimize processes related to customer support, account management, and healthcare analytics.
Read: Healthcare Digital Transformation: Ensuring Privacy, Security and Compliance
Another technological boon to the healthcare industry is Robotics. As the name sounds, it is a next-gen introduction in the medical field goes beyond the application of automatic workflow. It is sure to bring about a paradigm shift in care delivery.
Although is it still in its nascent stage in the medical field, it has already started to show never-before results. Major of its applications are as below:
- ◙ Robotics is finding an increasing use in the emergency room where the specialists are required on the go. In absence of a human expert, medical robots can evaluate the condition and treatment need of the patients by reviewing their medical records and examining their condition. Besides, upon the need, they can facilitate a remote conversation with between the doctor and the patient. Robots, thus, are ensuring the timely delivery of quality care.
- ◙ Surgeries are a great milestone in healthcare robotics. The providers have started to use the robots for general surgeries. This allows for a minimal invasion, controlled and more accurate surgery, and quicker recovery. In addition to this, the scope of robotic surgeries is such that the surgeons can even operate a patient remotely.
- ◙ Today, experts are using nanorobots to treat chronic illnesses such as diabetes and even cancer with a precision which existed never-before. Nanorobots hold a unique advantage of being micro in size so that they can be used to treat infections inside the body. Despite being in an emerging phase, nanorobots promise to revamp the surgical processes.
- ◙ In the view of the increase in deadly viruses and infections, many providers are depending on robots to sanitize and disinfect facilities and premises. This prevents the human housekeeping from catching the infection and makes the cleaning process quicker and safer.
- ◙ Although at a smaller scale, for now, medical robots are proving to be a boon for people in remote and less accessible geographies. Providers can use the robots t communicate with, examine and treat people sitting at a different location.
Internet of things (IoT), the next level of technology application in healthcare, has given birth to smart machines, connected devices, and mobile care.
A smartphone today has a much bigger role in our everyday lives that it had ever before. Whether it is small devices such as wearables or complex ones like interoperable machines, healthcare industry is generating a huge amount of data every second and this big data in healthcare holds the potential to potential to optimize the quality of care, reduce healthcare costs, predict and avoid diseases and epidemics and give the entire population a better quality of life.
For this possibility to materialize, management of this data is crucial and many organizations are already formulating expert strategies around an efficient healthcare information management.
Data management involves aggregating, cleansing, normalizing, updating and analyzing health data. It relies heavily on automation and machine to run volumes of repetitive tasks.
Read: Healthcare IoT: Interoperability And Security Issues And What To Do about Them
Here are a few scenarios where big data and an efficient data management framework can make a revolutionary mark in healthcare delivery.
- ◙ Healthcare information management can help the shift managers figure out an optimum number of staff workers to keep the labor costs in check along with offering an excellent patient service.
- ◙ It is fair to call electronic health records (EHR) and electronic medical records (EMR) the most significant example of data management contribution to patient care. This has enabled the doctors to access complete health profiles of their patients and take the most appropriate course of treatment. Majorly, proper data management and its benefits are ensuring timely and quality care, reduced cost of treatment, enhanced patient experience and making way for a unified healthcare system.
- ◙ Wearables are constantly sending public health data into the cloud. Using this, healthcare analytics gives the departments of health insights into to health of the general public and identify any trends to take accurate measures in the direction of public health.
- ◙ Data management is also facilitating in utilizing the power of predictive analytics in healthcare which enables the doctors to make more informed and quicker treatment decisions and offer a preventive care with higher accuracy.
- ◙ By gathering large amounts of information such as symptoms, treatment plans, recovery ratio etc., it is possible for the medical expert to find a cure for the chronic ailments and thus-far incurable diseases.
- ◙ Leveraging data can also contribute to a better public health by spreading awareness among people and helping them be focused on managing self-health. It can also improve drug and medication adherence among patients.
It should be wrong to say that automation, robotics, and data management are related to one another in certain ways. Together, they have the ability to improve treatment outcomes and patient experience and optimize the process flow in healthcare operations.