We want to look at factors that are heavily impacting the healthcare that we know today. Starting with the biggest one of all – Brexi.
How will Brexit affect the healthcare system we know today?
There has been a new and exciting initiative allowing EU citizens to use e-Prescriptions across borders, in other EU countries. But what about when the UK leaves the EU? Trading agreements may make it hard to ship products to the UK, affecting the supply of vital medical equipment and prescription drugs. The consequences of brexit on the pharmaceutical industry are yet to be known but we may be looking at a future of limited access to certain drugs, with substantial cost price increases (and therefore an impact on our taxes.)
As a country we also risk missing out on clinical trial opportunities going forward. UK organisations were the largest beneficiary of clinical trials in the EU. Will the UK leaving the EU mean that we are heavily impacted in terms of research opportunities? This could have a knock on effect in modernising our healthcare. It may also discourage top clinicians from coming to work in UK clinics and even collaborating with UK clinicians.
Furthermore, the UK relies on employees from the EU, with around 10% of doctors and 5% of nurses coming from other EU countries. Post Brexit will the NHS trusts struggle to fill these vacancies?
We don’t know what’s going to happen post Brexit, but we will certainly be updating this blog post once we have more information. Ultimately no one knows the answer just yet, we are just wondering and thinking about a future where the UK is no longer part of the EU and what that could mean for our already very busy health care system.
Are we moving towards a digital healthcare system?
There are positive innovations to look forward to over the next few months and years. We can now track, diagnose, monitor and store vital statistics and medical information for patients. With access to online system checkers, e-diagnosing services, digital GP’s and robot assisted surgery, it is no surprise that the healthcare we know today is rapidly transforming.
Goodbye to relying on patient memory. With basic trackers embedded in our devices, we are constantly being measured on patterns such as physical activity and sleep. Patient-generated data comes in a variety of forms, with tiny biometric sensors that can be sewn into fabrics, patient data has never been so accurate.
Could technology replace the relationship between a patient and doctor? Digital healthcare tech takes full advantage of patient-generated data and care management strategies, implementing care teams, secure text messaging, tracking patient health factors and care plans.
A new era for data protection.
Will patient’s sensitive personal data (genetics, health data) be effected with the rise of digital healthcare? GDPR is a positive thing for healthcare organisations. It is now fundamental for healthcare organisations to understand and store patient data. We have more available information than ever before to help with diagnosis and treatments.
Health data collection is becoming a part of our daily lives and according to the Future Health Index, 57% of patients use a device that monitors health indicators and 33% of these patients have never communicated that personal information with their doctor. From better data insights, we should be able to work towards better and faster prevention.
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