DIGITAL POTENTIAL OF HEALTHCARE: HOW WILL THE "DIGIT" CHANGE THE MEDICAL INDUSTRY
Healthcare, like no other industry, is ready for introduction of new technologies. Development perspectives and best solutions for digitalization of the industry have been assessed by speakers of the "International Digitalization Trends in Healthcare" discussion as part of the Telemedforum.
Natalya Polushkina, Vice President and Executive Director of Biomedical Technologies Cluster, Skolkovo Foundation, has noted that digital technologies are one of the priorities and rapidly evolving healthcare areas in the world: "According to Global Market Insights, the share of digital medical solutions will reach USD 380 billion by 2024. Digital technologies have been and still are developing rapidly."
As part of the national Healthcare project, a unified federal digital loop will be created which will become a basis for introducing cutting-edge technologies in all healthcare areas. The projects aim primarily at increasing life expectancy.
"First of all, we emphasize the importance of diagnosing and monitoring patients. Moreover, great significance in the national project is given to the development of research centers. On the basis of such centers, we are planning to develop, within a year, a prototype of virtual integrated innovative systems enabling to control all the steps a patient takes – from initial visit to high-tech operations he or she undergoes," noted Yevgeniya Merkulova, Head of the Division for Coordinating Regional Healthcare Informatization Programs, Information Technology Department of the Russian Ministry of Health.
When introducing digital developments, it is important to consider foreign experience. According to Hal Wolf, President and CEO of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), today approximately 776 million people receive services in various clinics, and artificial intelligence is massively used for improving the quality of medical products: "One of the biggest challenges we face is a lack of correct and timely information. This is a common problem for both urban and rural hospitals. For many years, the healthcare system has been collecting information which is stored in different places, and this data is useless unless we do something. Technologies will help us build a global ecosystem for efficient data use."
Today all countries are undergoing the change of the "sacral knowledge" model in healthcare, which is becoming more accessible and personalized. The restricted access medical information model is changing, the former "doctor — patient" paradigm is being destroyed. According to Mikhail Yugay, CEO of the International Medical Cluster Foundation, a patient will become the center of future digital solutions.