Nowadays, it is not surprising to see doctors using iPad to note and store the medical records of the patients. The rapid transformation of medical technology and the availability of technology for diagnostic and therapeutic equipment together with changing pattern for the practice of doctors have revolutionized the way of health care being delivered. The technology shift has cast itself by bringing a digital transformation in the interaction of patients and doctors.
The convergence of technology in healthcare has provided a huge opportunity to improve the experience of the patient and operate more efficiently. Health care technology solutions are able to improve and modernize medical care by reducing cost and avoid inefficiency.
Telemedicine, Hospital Information System (HIS), electronic records and web-based services have expanded the IT infrastructure in health care organizations of India.
Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute and Research Centre provides the diagnostic of high quality and take multi-disciplinary care of cancer patients. Today many of the health care institutes are at the forefront to enable the initiative of health care technology. Introduction of HIS, picture archival and communication system (PACS) and electronic health record system (EHR) has led to a rapid increase in the volume of data.
The data containing medical records of patient needs to be highly available rather than its remote accessibility with archival solutions. In the medical industry, it is very difficult to maintain the patient record, to meet the capacity demand of data-intensive medical images and records. To enhance the storage platform for fulfilling the requirement, technology helps a lot.
Revolution of Digital health Technology in India:
The statistics say that around 76% of health care professionals in India use Digital Health Technology in their practice.
Digital Health Technology is a pivotal pillar to deliver value-based care across the health care continuum in India. The technology evolved to lower the barriers between hospital and patient and to enhance the satisfaction with tools like telehealth and adaptive intelligence solutions. It was reported that about two-thirds of Indians feel comfortable about seeking medical advice from doctors through an application available on their phone. It suggests a high openness to adopt telehealth and unlock its benefits.
But the benefits of digital health technology or mobile health apps are not that popular in rural areas and also in the cities. Also, the implementation of technology is cost-effective and it is a compelling method to connect clinics in the cities and rural regions. Even though we are facing health care challenges, we are evolving the innovative solutions to help address the formidable challenges.
Recently evolved medical technologies in India include the smart inhalers, wireless brain sensors, robotic surgery, artificial organ, etc.
Smart inhaler: It is a small device called Bluetooth-enabled smart inhaler for asthma patients, which records the time and date of each dose and check whether the dose was correctly administered. The data is sent to the smart-phones of the patient to keep track and control on their condition.
Tele-health: Telehealth is a quickly developing technology that allows the patient to receive medical care through electronic devices instead of waiting for face-to-face appointments with the doctor. Highly personalized mobile apps are developed where patients can speak virtually with physicians and medical professionals to receive instant diagnosis and advice.
Precision Medicine: Advancement in Medical technology becomes more and more personalized to the patients. Precision medicine allows the physician to select therapies and medicine to treat a disease like cancer, which are based on the genetics of an individual. These personalized medicines are more effective than others as it attacks the tumour based on the genes and proteins of the patient, which helps to destroy the cause of disease.
Artificial Organs: It was revolutionary to regenerate skin cells for skin draughts of the victims suffering from burn marks. A scientist with the help of advanced technology has created blood vessels, synthetic ovaries and pancreas. The artificial organs then grow within the body of the patient to replace the faulty one. The ability to supply artificial organ accepted by the human body is revolutionary, saving the lives of many patients.
Wireless Brain Sensor: It is a medical device that will aid doctors in measuring the temperature and pressure within the brain which reduces the need for additional surgeries. Medical technology has developed an electronic device that can be placed in the brain and dissolve when it is no longer needed.
3D printing: 3D printing is again the unique technology where these printers can be used to create implants and can be used during surgery. 3-D printed prosthetics contains the digital functionalities that match the individual’s measurements down to the millimetre. It can be used to print pills that contain multiple drugs which will help patients to monitor multiple medications.
Robotic Surgery: It is used in minimally invasive procedures and helps to aid precision. With the help of robotic surgery, surgeons can perform the complex procedures that are highly difficult to conduct. Advancement in technology can allow surgeons to view additional information which is vital during surgery. The invention raises the concern that it will replace the human surgeons, but it will only be used to assist and enhance surgeons in the future.
Virtual Reality Device: It is a sophisticated tool used to gain the experience they need while rehearsing procedures and providing a virtual understanding of the connection of human anatomy. It acts as a great aid for patients helping them with diagnosis, plans of treatment and procedures they may be going through.
Artificial Intelligence: Artificial Intelligence can be defined as the capability of devices to learn on their own without an explicit program. It is used in medical education with the potential to reduce the count of actual dissertation and help in the study of a human body.
CRISPR: Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) is the most advanced technology in editing the gene of a human. By harnessing the natural mechanism of the immune system of bacterium cells for invading viruses which will help to cut down the infected DNA strands. The cutting of DNA has the potential power to transform the way of treating a disease. With the modification of gene, the major threats of health like cancer and HIV could be potentially overcome in future.
A sound regulatory framework is essential for the growth of medical technology. The government of India is in the process of developing a separate legal framework designed to ensure the quality, safety and performance of the medical devices. The framework will take into consideration certain international standards like the Global Harmonization Task Force (GHTF). However, for the safety and quality in medical devices, appropriate regulation and quality control processes will be pre-requisite for innovation to sustain.