Healthcare information technology (IT) is evolving rapidly to meet changing healthcare provider needs. Current healthcare IT trends tend to focus intensely on greater security for patient data and patient satisfaction. Moving into the future, medical software tools and trends will continue to evolve. Although it’s hard to predict with certainty what features and tools healthcare organizations will benefit from over the coming years, here is a highlight of some key healthcare information technology trends to keep tabs on to stay ahead of the curve.
1. Increased attack on healthcare providers
Cybercriminals have heightened their efforts to hack healthcare systems beyond phishing attacks in a bid to steal sensitive information and auction it on the dark web. During the second half of 2020, various ransomware attacks shut down IT systems and slowed down operations at various hospitals and healthcare facilities throughout the U.S.
Such cyber-attacks have emphasized the need to establish robust cybersecurity solutions and invest in secure data storage. Moving forward, healthcare information technology teams will need to effectively train their staff members on cybersecurity best practices. They’ll need to mitigate attacks and troubleshoot security vulnerabilities as a vast amount of work goes remote.
2. Increased use of the cloud
The latest HIMSS Analytics Survey revealed that more than 84% of healthcare organizations have already adopted cloud technology. The heightened need for flexible data storage has forced large health facilities and hospitals with multiple locations or departments to prefer cloud-based solutions over on-premise hosting. In addition, cloud storage allows physicians to quickly and seamlessly access up-to-date information. This improves treatment outcomes and patient satisfaction.
As cloud-based solutions gain popularity in the healthcare industry, one major concern is data security. Fortunately, many IT service providers have put in place secure encryptions. Great strides have also been made in Blockchain-based cloud storage, where user data is split into multiple encrypted segments interlinked through a hashing function. The secured segments are then distributed across the network, with each segment residing on a decentralized location for added security.
3. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The healthcare industry is rapidly embracing AI technology. It’s predicted that the adoption will grow by as much as 40% by the close of 2021. Artificial intelligence is actually not a new entrant in healthcare – it’s something that has continually revolutionized the healthcare culture. Currently, AI algorithms are used in healthcare information technology to manage medical records, develop drugs faster, design treatment plans, and more.
Healthcare consultants also use AI to reveal clinically relevant information from heaps of healthcare data and enhance decision-making. Some medical researchers have also built AI applications that make use of pattern recognition techniques to analyze a patient’s lifestyle and genetic makeup to suggest suitable medication.
4. Big data in healthcare information technology applications
Tech-savvy organizations collect lots of information about individuals through formats such as e-commerce, social media, financial transactions, and online transactions. Big data identifies trends and patterns for future use. In the healthcare industry, big data offers several advantages, such as reducing the rate of medication errors. Certain software solutions can find inconsistencies in a patient’s health and drug prescriptions by analyzing patient records.
Big data can also facilitate preventive care since most people stepping into emergency rooms are often recurring patients. With the help of big data analysis, hospitals can identify recurring patients and create effective preventive plans to keep them safe and healthy at home.
Moving into the future, ignoring healthcare IT trends will cause healthcare facilities to fall behind and run the risk of compromising patient data and poor treatment outcomes. By adopting these healthcare IT emerging technologies, you can enhance patient satisfaction and ensure data security. However, you’ll need to partner with an experienced healthcare IT service provider to ensure faster and safer adoption.
At Webhead, we deliver client-centric digital technology into every area of your business through high-touch insights, great customer experiences, and data-driven results. Your time and effort are better spent caring for your patients while we handle all aspects of your technology infrastructure. Contact Webhead to learn more about our proven healthcare IT solutions!