The COVID-19 pandemic brought a wave of digital transformation to many industries. But healthcare, in particular, took a giant digital leap.
With billions of lives on the line, access to healthcare and support systems became the No. 1 priority. As a result, advancing the capabilities of remote healthcare became a necessity.
According to reports[i], over $21 billion were invested in the industry to digitize healthcare.
From eHealth to mHealth, AI screening, and wearables – almost every aspect of healthcare leveraged technology to serve patients and healthcare organizations at scale.
Today, the global digital health market is expected to reach $657 billion[ii] by 2025.
This blog post discusses everything you need to know about digital transformation in healthcare to offer the best possible services to patients.
So, let’s get going.
What is Digital Transformation in Healthcare?
Digital transformation in healthcare is making use of the latest technologies, processes, and methodologies to deliver optimal value to patients, healthcare professionals, and organizations.
It provides the agility to improve the operational efficiency of healthcare organizations and enhance the overall experiences of patients.
Digital transformation in healthcare leverages foundational technologies such as Big Data, IoT, Web 3.0, PaaS/SaaS, and Unified Communications. The resulting processes are, thus, automated, mobile, and fast.
Benefits of Digital Transformation in Healthcare for Patients
Digital transformation in healthcare has direct significant benefits for patients. These include-
Quick and Personalized Service
Digitalized healthcare enables quick access to doctors and healthcare services. You can do a personalized session with your doctor on the move and get an accurate health diagnosis.
Easy Access to Healthcare Data
You can easily access and manage your health records as all your healthcare data is centralized. Sharing this data is also a breeze across a range of devices and platforms.
Convenient Appointment Scheduling
You can book appointments with your doctor at the most convenient time and date in just a few clicks.
Improved Communication With Doctors
With digitalized healthcare, you can use a variety of channels such as chatting, video calling, and emailing to receive consultations, treatment strategies, and drug prescriptions.
Tracking Health Metrics in Real-Time
You can track important health metrics such as heart rate, body temperature, blood volume pulse, and sleep patterns in real-time to check your health status.
Benefits of Digital Transformation in Healthcare for Professionals & Organizations
Besides patients, the digitalization of healthcare also offers immense benefits to healthcare professionals and organizations. Some of these are-
Digitalized healthcare replaces paperwork with digital records. This reduces manual labor, simplifies processes, and enhances deliverability.
Improved Business Continuity
Digitalized healthcare portals make it easier for doctors to offer remote care and for patients to get on-demand support. This ensures long-term patient continuity, hence, more business.
Centralized and Secure Database
With digitalization, you can create a secure database by encrypting patients’ data. This data can be categorized and stored on a centralized platform with role-based access to concerned people.
Reduced Costs and Improved ROI
Digitalization helps you automate repetitive tasks. This reduces operational costs, thus, resulting in more cost-effective services with higher ROI.
Fuel Medical Research and Development
Patient data is instrumental for medical research. By collecting and analyzing data from various sources, healthcare organizations can discover hidden disorders and their medical solutions.
Challenges in Digital Transformation in Healthcare and Their Solutions
Digital transformation in healthcare is a long and complex process. It covers everything from infrastructure to application integration and provisioning of services.
Here are some challenges that healthcare organizations face during the process along with solutions to overcome them –
Challenge 1: Data Security
Cybersecurity is the primary concern with the digitalization of healthcare. A single malware attack can breach a patient’s private data and cause damage. This will not only disrupt patient care but also incur reputation loss to the healthcare organization.
Solution: Leverage Blockchain
Based on a decentralized network of computers, blockchain technology is a highly effective tool to prevent data breaches. Patients can control their EHR (electronic health record) from an app and grant permission to doctors and other health professionals to access this data when required.
Challenge 2: Initial Costs
Digital transformation in healthcare would require a huge investment in technology. With healthcare organizations focused primarily on costs and returns, digitalization plans are often put on the backburner.
Solution: Adopt Agile Methodology
Agile is an iterative approach that helps you deliver quick and cost-effective results. By adopting agile methodologies, you will be able to implement new changes in the most economical way possible.
Challenge 3: Skill Gap
Digitalization of healthcare requires both patients and healthcare professionals to use new tools and technologies. But not everyone is tech-savvy. And oftentimes, getting people to learn these new skills is also challenging.
Solution: Educate Stakeholders
You can create training programs to educate your staff and patients on the use of new software. Tell them why it’s important and give them proper time and space to learn and adopt new methods.
Challenge 4: Healthcare Regulations Compliance
Healthcare regulations help protect patients’ medical records and personal information at all costs. Complying with these regulations is a must to digitize your healthcare service for the long term.
Solution: Build Compliant Software
Building compliant software is the best way to conform to these regulations. You can partner with an experienced and certified software development company for this.
Building FHIR Compliant COVID-19 Support Portal for a Leading Healthcare IT Services
Grazitti Interactive is an ISO-certified and HIPPA-compliant digital services provider. During the pandemic outbreak, one of our customers, a Healthcare IT service provider, needed a COVID-19 support portal.
This portal had to be FHIR compliant to enable the customer’s partner healthcare organizations to store and manage their patient’s data. This would help them effectively monitor cases and generate useful reports to better serve patients.
Know the full story of how Grazitti helped the customer with –
- FHIR Compliant Portal Development
- Role-Based Access and Functionalities
- Reports Generation in Graphical and Map View
- CSV Format Compatibility for Data Import and Export
The Future of Healthcare is Digital
Patients’ demands are rising, and with the pandemic having added fuel to the fire, it’s time for healthcare organizations to become digitalized. Given its advantages, the digital transformation in healthcare is anyway inevitable. So, the only question is have you jumped on the bandwagon yet?
Looking for Ways to Digitalize Your Healthcare Organization? Contact Us.
Grazitti’s team of experts can help you leverage cloud, analytics, and social to build cutting-edge healthcare solutions. To learn more, write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll take it from there.
[i] [ii] Statista – Global Digital Health Market Size Forecast
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