We made it, friends. The turbulence of 2020 is behind us, and a new year is well underway. If the previous year has taught us anything, it’s that preparation is key. Recent healthcare IT trends like advancements in smart tech and collaboration solutions aim to help clinicians plan for potential threats in the future.
As a year filled with unprecedented shifts in care delivery, 2020 also pointed to the obvious: healthcare technology and digital health strategies are only set to grow from here.
We’re already witnessing 2021’s healthcare IT trends in action, and as such, we’ve outlined a few that we expect will further develop as the year progresses. These predictions focus on expanding healthcare technology and collaborative strategies, forever changing the way care is delivered and experienced.
The State of Healthcare Communications Report
More safety precautions and endeavors for securing our well-being will be seen across the health system throughout the year. Enhanced healthcare policies, wellness measures, and even biosecurity will ensure better safety and security. Again, being fully prepared for the unthinkable must be prioritized as the new norm.
Similarly, safeguarding provider and clinician health will be just as important as maintaining patient and client health. Regardless of its industry, every organization will adjust its standards to provide healthy protocols to at least some extent. Early-warning systems, remote work, and improved sanitization procedures will contribute to faster prevention and prompt response.
Better data collection and storage will also be needed to manage the growing influx of new patient data since the pandemic began. Critical data privacy and HIPAA-compliance concerns are also experiencing a sharp rise, with health systems opting for the most secure solutions for providers and patients alike.
Eliminating organizational risks and system vulnerabilities will also be a chief focus in the year ahead. Better cybersecurity and big data management will be prioritized, alongside more resilient technology, dependable connectivity, and more reliability overall.
As data demands soar and companies scale up, cloud software will also become more prominent. Cloud software is most effective for optimizing workflows, patient outcomes, and communication. With fewer limitations and easier affordability, cloud software is expected to grow consistently from here on out.
During such a critical time for safety and social distancing, it comes as no surprise that 2020 was the year of telehealth’s revolution. We will see this trend in virtual care and telemedicine continue to develop and expand well after the pandemic has ended. After all, the option to provide remote care ensures wellness regardless of location.
Telehealth has existed for decades in various forms, with a wide variety of technologies that support virtual care:
Additionally, robotics and digital health will expand as hospitals aim to treat more patients efficiently and effectively. Technology has come a long way in providing unexpected treatment at greater rates and speeds.
Virtual reality and augmented reality (VR/AR) will also rise in popularity as ground-breaking care delivery and new treatment options are explored and researched. Necessity is the mother of invention, and we’ll need innovation more this year than ever before.
One of the most extensive trends for 2021 so far is the burst of smart automation and artificial intelligence (AI). From self-monitoring health tools to autonomous assistant technology, smart AI allows clinicians to get more done faster. This burst in AI will continue to flourish as we further progress into remote care technologies and strategies.
Improving the patient experience will also heavily rely on the ability to provide virtual patient monitoring. This capability predicts and prevents adverse patient events and is expected to endure as a healthcare trend throughout 2021.
Predictive data analytics and intelligent technology are also set to grow. Technologies like smart beds, cameras, and speakers allow care teams to control treatment and care delivery.
Smart hospitals throughout the care network will also evolve, providing actionable data from existing information. By simplifying operations and scaling clinician workflows, health systems can increase efficiency and provide more transparency for the entire care team.
Finally, as a key reaction to 2020’s exponential care demands, providers from various health systems will collaborate with the ultimate goal of providing the most cohesive care quality. No longer toiling away in silos, newly formed connected care networks will become more prevalent, creating a unified system of care.
Collaboration is viewed as the single most important aspect of quality care. When clinicians focus on seamless care team collaboration, dramatic improvements to the way care is delivered are realized. Health systems that prioritize collaboration among caregivers realize the benefits of collaboration as a strategy for care teams.
TigerConnect lets providers and clinicians unify information from these numerous systems to share vital information with the right person at the right time. Now more than ever, it’s critical to connect internal and external teams, patients, systems, and insights. As a cloud-based collaboration solution, TigerConnect allows care teams to reach one another without limitation.
For 2021, technology, smart devices, and AI are already the key shifts in healthcare IT trends. Now more than ever, it’s critical for providers to connect teams, patients, systems, and insights.
Technological advancements that help collaboration flourish must be prioritized. These systems will improve the patient experience and our health system both this year and into the future.