Technology has developed rapidly and is helping the aging community. Innovation is reducing the cost of care with smart devices, sensors, and cameras. In addition, technology is helping the medical world. Doctors can use technology with patient communication, monitor their patient’s conditions, or use innovative technology for early diagnoses or surgery. Furthermore, patients can use technology to learn more about their medical condition or alternative treatments, which helps them make medical decisions. Finally, technology is helping to reduce costs for the aging community in medical-related expenses.
How is technology helping with medical-related expenses?
As people age, they often develop health issues leading to more medical appointments. Adding more transportation costs because of doctor appointments and other health care needs. Technology is reducing transportation costs through teleconferences between a doctor and their patient. Plus, technology allows proper monitoring and treatment protocol for patients at home versus going to a medical facility for the same treatment. The results are recorded and go to health professionals making care more cost-efficient and easier to manage.
How does technology help monitor a person with a medical condition?
Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) devices connect results to health professionals and electronic health records. For people with heart conditions, professionals can monitor a patient’s blood pressure or abnormal heart rhythms or oversee electrocardiography (ECG). Regarding other medical conditions, devices can measure a person’s oxygen levels or alert if a patient is dehydrated or has shortness of breath. There are devices to monitor glucose level readings and alert a person about their glucose levels. There are even systems that take X-rays or perform kidney dialysis. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) stated there are “more than 60 different acute conditions, such as asthma, congestive heart failure, pneumonia and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), can be treated appropriately and safely in home settings with proper monitoring and treatment protocols.” All saving patients costs in transportation and reducing the number of emergency department visits.
Plus, technology is making people more involved in their medical decisions than at any other time in history.
What does all this mean?
Technology is essential and helps reduce medical costs, but personal contact is essential too. The future of medicine lies in healthcare workers working hand-in-hand with technology. By embracing this relationship, the healthcare system could become more sustainable by providing cheaper, faster, and more effective solutions for disease. Still, patients like physically seeing their medical team. Sixty-four percent of households using telehealth would prefer in-person visits. Fortunately, there is also a trend for at-home care. Many Medicare Advantage plans have contracts with providers for at-home care. Technology is excellent, but human interaction is equally important.
STAGES is here to educate people on how technology can help with people’s medical costs.