Technology has irrevocably changed medicine. Though there have been a few hiccups over the course of human history in healthcare when it comes to integrative technology, most experts will agree that collaborative technologies connecting healthcare providers more closely with their patients helps professionals confer more precise and effective care.
There is no denying it: the internet and big dataare the twin harbingers of big changes to come in the healthcare industry. Doctors and other healthcare professionals that do not begin integrating advanced technology into their healthcare practices will be left in the dust.
So how do you begin integrating technology into your practice for the benefit of you and your patients? Remote patient monitoring software is a good place to start. There are many different variations of remote monitoring, but the basic idea is establishing a digital connection between providers and patients to improve care.
The degree and regularity with which patients opt to self-report symptoms and vital updates is customized to best meet the needs of the individual’s healthcare plan. Here are 4 ways remote patient monitoring can benefit you as a doctor.
Increased Patient/Doctor Collaboration
Healthcare truly is a collaboration between healthcare providers and recipients. But standard medical institutions and healthcare practices erect an invisible barrier between professional medical providers and patients. This barrier is important when it comes to setting boundaries between patients and their doctors, but it shouldn’t be so obstructive as to inhibit patients from being proactive in their own care.
Remote patient monitoring makes patients an active participant in their healthcare by necessitating that they report on their own health. Whereas patients can so often feel relegated to passive observers as professionals dictate the course of their medical journey, remote patient monitoring gives them the tools to be as involved as they see fit. Patients likely feel more inclined to participate without the fiscal burdens that come with redundant, regular visits to a doctor’s office.
When your patients feel more empowered in the process, they will become more invested in improving their health with your guidance.
Plus, there is plenty of evidence which suggests that patients are ready and eager to make use of fitness and health-centric wearables.
With regular, remote updates provided willingly by patients, doctors will be able to see a wide berth of healthier patients who take more initiative in their day-to-day and long-term healthcare. Doctors will also see less congested waiting rooms, as well as improved patient health overall.
As less patients require regular in-person checkups, the schedules of healthcare professionals are freed up to allow for more patients or more involved care for existing ones.
And a happy doctor makes for much healthier patients, as I’m sure any doctor will agree!
Reduced Hospital Stays
For particularly at-risk patients, preventing or reducing the number of hospital visits a patient is subjected to is key to keeping them stable and relatively healthy. When 1 in 31 hospital patients is subjected to a healthcare related infection, it is imperative that doctors and patients reduce hospitalization risk.
To stop the escalation of illness or injury before hospitalization is required, doctors and patients must have a reliable and consistent communication with patients over the course of treatment. Remote patient monitoring gives doctors information of disease and injury progression in real time.
If you are a doctor, you know how important reliable information is when it comes to self-reporting symptoms and any remedies administered in a patient’s home. When patients visit a doctor’s office, they are giving doctors information filtered through memory lapse, their own (sometimes questionable) judgment, and hindsight. You often must decide for yourself if you are getting the whole story.
But remote patient monitoring allows doctors the benefit of watching disease progression in real time. You are gathering information daily from patients that they might not be able to remember accurately if they needed to wait weeks to see you in office.
In turn, you can provide real time feedback, medicine adjustments, or other therapies without asking that the patient leave the comfort of their own home.
Better Healthcare Outcomes
Preventive care is always better than reactionary care. Remote patient monitoring puts everyday wellness at the forefront of patient care. Patients who were previously inhibited by travel costs or other barriers typically associated with regular doctor’s visits are no longer so constrained when they have the option to participate in remote patient monitoring.
People who would not normally take dramatic steps in maintaining their health might allot smaller bursts of time on a daily basis. Likewise, patients for whom the doctor’s office is an expensive or unrealistic trek can rely on the internet to establish reliable, cheaper communication with their physicians.