Ever since we've been introduced to the internet in the late 20th century, the world as we knew it gradually started to change. Soon enough, technology became an integral part of our lives. Cell phones made it into the pocket of every passerby on the streets, the workplace transformed in so many ways, and industries in their entirety revolutionized after adopting ever-evolving technologies.
During all of these changes, the Healthcare sector seemed unfazed for the most part; after all, it's always been the most complicated industry throughout mankind's history. However, later rather than sooner, technology was finally able to make it through this formidable fortress, and here we are reaping the rewards.
As of today, the impact of technology in the healthcare industry shines bright across the globe, so let's take a glimpse at some of the most significant impacts we've come to witness as a result.
The Healthcare Scene Has Finally Adopted Digital Marketing
Seeing the impact that adopting digital marketing has brought to businesses of all sizes and fields never gets old; it's a transformation that utilizes digital means to bridge the gap between businesses and their target customers. It may have taken a while for physicians to get on board, but digital marketing seems to be the next big trend in the world of healthcare. As a result, you can witness various changes in both the way physicians operate as well as the execution of medical digital marketing. For instance, Lauryn Preston from Digital Logic says that the best SEO companies care more about retaining their clients than chasing new leads. For someone just getting started, this may sound like a counterproductive approach, but it makes sense to strive towards such a goal.
The Internet Has Transformed Physician-Patient Relationships
The way physicians and patients interact have been shaken to the core as well. Before, a patient would book an appointment in advance, most of the time waiting in line for hours until it's their turn to see the doctor. Thanks to technology, this scenario is now being replaced with pre-booked appointments on mobile apps, remote follow-up post appointments and surgeries, and accurate documentation of medicines taken. What's even more astounding is that physicians can contact and communicate with their patients even before their set appointments, which allows the patients to be well-prepared before their visit, cutting the number of visits to only what's absolutely necessary.
Enhanced Access to Mobile Healthcare and Telemedicine
Mobile healthcare goes beyond the patient's ability to pre-book an appointment through mobile apps to cover the physicians' needs as well. Thanks to the advancement of mobile technology, physicians can share their reports and scans across different departments, even different facilities, almost immediately. You can only imagine the infinite number of appointments and visits that, thanks to mobile healthcare, are now eliminated. Moreover, telemedicine cuts down this number of visits even more. It's not uncommon now for patients and physicians to conduct their appointment through mobile communications, usually video calls. Telemonitoring devices also make it possible for physicians to view real-time data conveyed from their patients' devices, enabling them to make better treatment courses.
The Introduction of Electronic Health Records
If you asked any of the experts about the biggest impact technology has left in the healthcare sector, they'll most certainly talk about Electronic Health Records (EHR). EHR is a system that logs on the patients' health information, making it accessible to the patients, doctors, pharmacists, nurses, and all necessary healthcare practitioners. By doing so, the quality of care a patient gets becomes multiplied, more focused, and much more accurate.
Increased Public Health Awareness and Resources: The Patient as a Decision-Maker
Thanks to the availability and accessibility of information, medical terms, and knowledge are no longer limited to physicians. With a quick internet search, a patient or their family can get detailed descriptions of their condition and all related information. Surely enough, such accessibility results in a few drawbacks in addition to its benefits. For starters, many started to believe that they don't need the consultation of a doctor to treat themselves. Moreover, when the patient believes they know everything about their condition or if they've come across information contradicting what their physician of choice recommends, they'll be biased towards their own resources, failing to see the bigger picture or trust the expertise of a medical veteran.
While these drawbacks are troublesome, they can be smartly overcome through a simple approach: engage the patient in the decision-making process. With such a critical role, physicians have started to realize that today's patient no longer plays a passive role; on the contrary, they're actively seeking ways to contribute to the healthcare system. This has also changed the way that physicians operate, and they've started to shift their perspectives to view the patient as a vital piece in the decision-making process.
The Manufacture of Advanced Medical Wearables and Devices
Nowadays, there is equipment to measure and monitor different chronic conditions, all while giving the patients' advice, recommendations, and alerts whenever a certain action needs to be taken. Such a role was previously entrusted to physicians, but now smart wearables and devices are taking over. With the number of medical equipment in the market today, one sometimes wonders if the healthcare system won't undergo complete restructure. However, it's not a matter of "if"; it's certainly only a matter of time until this happens.
The Role of Data Analytics
We've witnessed a brief glimpse of the power of data analytics when applied to the healthcare industry when EHRs were introduced the first time. However, the true power of data analytics far surpasses the impact of EHRs. It's not an exaggeration to say that, if adopted fully, data analytics would make it possible to predict future trends, occasions, and outcomes throughout all of the healthcare industry, making it one of the strongest, and scariest, weapons.
The healthcare industry has always been one formidable fortress that rarely allows structural changes. Although it's been resisting technology for too long, we can finally see how technology has won and started taking the industry by storm. This impact can be seen after adopting digital marketing strategies to transform physician-patient relationships, introducing Electronic Health Records, involving the patient in decision making, manufacturing wearables, and implementing data analytics.
It is one thing to read and another thing to understand what you are reading. Not only do you want to understand, but also remember what you've read. Otherwise, we can safely say that if we're not gaining anything from what we read, then it's a big waste of time.
Whatever you read, there are ways to do so in a more effective manner to help you understand better. Whether you are reading by choice, for an upcoming test, or work-related material, here are a few ways to help you improve your reading skills and retain that information.
Read with a Purpose
Never has there been a shortage of great books. So, someone recommended a great cookbook for you. You start going through it, but your mind is wandering. This doesn't mean the cookbook was an awful recommendation, but it does mean it doesn't suit nor fulfill your current needs or curiosity.
Maybe your purpose is more about launching a business. Maybe you're a busy mom and can't keep office hours, but there's something you can do from home to help bring in more money, so you want information about that. At that point, you won't benefit from a cookbook, but you could gain a lot of insight and find details here on how-to books about working from home. During this unprecedented year, millions have had to make the transition to work from home, and millions more are deciding to do that. Either way, it's not a transition that comes automatically or easily, but reading about it will inform you about what working from home entails.
When you pre-read it primes your brain when it's time to go over the full text. We pre-read by going over the subheadings, for instance, the table of contents, and skimming through some pages. This is especially useful when you have formal types of academic books. Pre-reading is a sort of warm-up exercise for your brain. It prepares your brain for the rest of the information that will come about and allows your brain to be better able to pick the most essential pieces of information you need from your chosen text.
Highlighting essential sentences or paragraphs is extremely helpful for retaining information. The problem, however, with highlighting is that we wind up highlighting way too much. This happens because we tend to highlight before we begin to understand. Before your pages become a neon of colored highlights, make sure that you only highlight what is essential to improve your understanding and not highlight the whole page.
You might think there have been no new ways to read, but even the ancient skill of reading comes up with innovative ways; enter speed reading. The standard slow process shouldn't affect your understanding, but it does kill your enthusiasm. The average adult goes through around 200 to 250 words per minute. A college student can read around 450 words, while a professor averages about 650 words per minute, to mention a few examples. The average speed reader can manage 1,500 words; quite a difference! Of course, the argument arises between quality and quantity. For avid readers, they want both quantity and quality, which leads us to the next point.
Life is too short to expect to gain knowledge from just one type of genre. Some basic outcomes of reading are to expand your mind, perceive situations and events differently, expose yourself to other viewpoints, and more. If you only stick to one author and one type of material, you are missing out on a great opportunity to learn new things.
Having said that, if there's a book you are simply not enjoying, remember that life is also too short to continue reading it. Simply, close it, put it away and maybe give it another go later on, or give it away. There is no shame or guilt in not liking a book; even if it's from a favorite author. It's pretty much clear that you won't gain anything from a book that you don't even enjoy, let alone expect to learn something from it.
If you're able to summarize what you have read, then you have understood. When you summarize, you are bringing up all the major points that enhance your understanding. You can easily do so chapter by chapter.
Take a good look at your life and what's going on in it. Accordingly, you'll choose the material that is much more suitable for your situation and circumstances. When you read a piece of information that you find beneficial, look for a way to apply it to your life. Knowledge for the sake of knowledge isn't all that beneficial. But the application of knowledge from a helpful book is what will help you and make your life more interesting and more meaningful.