The union of healthcare and digital technology is causing a rapid transformation in the way healthcare is managed and delivered. This change is so profound that it is almost as unique as when modern medicine was first born.
Medical IT has improved diagnosis and treatment while transforming both hospitals and the doctor’s office. Digital technology covers a wide ranging field from software that runs the high-tech devices that make less invasive surgery possible, to the database applications that have brought big data into the practice of medicine. IT has also changed other areas, such as pharmaceuticals and biotechnology.
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IT is changing the traditional doctor/patient relationship in a number of important ways. Where once the patient had to set an appointment and travel to the doctor's office to get a health question answered, it is now possible to answer questions and address non-critical issues over the phone or email. And there will come a time, in the not too distant future, when remote monitoring of patients will reduce hospital time and save lives by notifying emergency medical services immediately, if there is a problem.
The shift to electronic record keeping in the medical industry is still ongoing and yet it has already greatly improved medical care in a number of ways. The presence of information that is both complete and accurate makes care easier and faster, improves diagnosis and reduces the possibility of medical errors. This is true for both EMR and EHR.
In the past, it was advances in bioscience that drove advances in medicine. This is still the case, however a new player has entered the field. Digital technology, with its wide spectrum of application, is changing the science of medicine in numerous ways, from how to diagnose a patient to keeping track of where the crash carts are.