It is interesting how health and medical care around the world has changed during the past several years. These changes were brought about by culture, legislation, history and technology. It is therefore imperative for healthcare organizations not only to understand these changes but also to anticipate the industry trends for 2015 in order to be prepared to make strategic decisions.
A lot of healthcare outsourcing trends emerging this year have much to do with technology. Let’s take a look at the top 5 developments in the industry.
Online learning is no longer new. But did you know that such is now also available for healthcare degrees? One of the reasons could be the fact that one third of the new jobs said to be in demand from 2012 to 2022 are in the healthcare industry. In fact, according to an article by U.S. News, the Affordable Care Act has resulted to new positions being created such as guided care managers. This is why many healthcare professionals are now looking into further education, now made easier through online courses.
Another new trend is the inclusion of health informatics and telemedicine training. In health informatics, students learn how to transmit electronic health records and portable medical data with the use of technology. Telemedicine, on the other hand, pertains to healthcare professionals and patients using tablets and other devices to communicate to each other.
Data and Analytics
In their book called “ePatient 2015: 15 Surprising Trends Changing Healthcare”, authors Fard Johnmar and Rohit Bhargava talked about the changes on how patient information are being collected and consumed. While the use of electronic health records (EHRs), clinical documentation tools, and telemedicine devices are making data collection faster and easier, it has also given rise to the issue of data integrity, which is something healthcare institutions must address. On a more positive note, data and analytics has also developed a trend called Predictive Psychohistory, which allows for large scale predictions regarding population health.
Personal Healthcare Movement
Since healthcare information is now easily accessible to patients, a movement towards personal health treatment has been developing. Johnmar and Bhargava also mentioned in their book that this movement has spawned a new trend called the Healthy Real Estate. People have realized that their general well-being is not only affected by the food they consume but by the environment as well. This realization now affects their decision on where to move and is choosing locations that encourage a healthier lifestyle and are near health care facilities.
Greater Patient Engagement
Technological advancements are helping patients gather the information they need about treatment options, availability of providers, navigating insurance concerns and more. Because of this, patients are now able to better understand their situation and communicate better with their doctors. While this may have its drawbacks, the biggest take away is that patients are now more empowered to make decisions and are more proactive about their health.
Most people are now interacting online via social media and that includes patients and healthcare professionals. For instance, patients now have access to YouTube videos that show them how to handle health-related concerns. Support groups are also now accessible on Facebook, giving patients an opportunity to connect with others all over the world.
Medical professionals are now also actively using social media to share insights and news about healthcare. This year, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre even live tweeted a heart surgery in celebration of Heart Month.
These are just some of the healthcare outsourcing trends to watch out for in the coming year. There is still more to look forward to in healthcare developments around the world.
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