The healthcare field of the world changes dramatically on a daily basis. Researchers are working feverishly day and night in many countries and technological strides have been made that boggle the mind. One day our health parameters will include safer facilities, greater mobility for amputees and increased tech devices to aid doctors and nurses. Take a peek at the following ten advances that might be coming to your area soon.
1. Cleaner environments–Keeping hospital environments super clean including patient, triage and operating rooms is a full time job for all administrators. New light bulbs are being tested that can disinfect and kill bacteria from any surface in these rooms. Whenever the light is on, it cleans the area continuously without the need for human assistance.
2. Stopping the spread of germs–Physicians do two major things every time they see a patient. They not only examine and diagnose, they must enter the data into the patient’s medical file. Even with gloved hands, germs are spread from patient to computer; then computer to patient again. Holographic keyboards and the computer mouse no longer need to be physically touched. It’s difficult to disinfect computer keyboards, so this new approach eliminates the physical keyboard – and the germs that reside on it.
3. Patient monitoring –A portable, remote device can help monitor one’s progress, lack thereof and even any symptoms of regression. Not only does the device collect and file all data, it can send warning signals to the patient’s physician and/or hospital. Patients no longer need to “check in” physically with their doctors on a daily basis to keep their medical condition updated. The monitor can do it for them without the need for a car trip to the physician’s office.
4. Hand-held monitors-Similar to the “Star Trek” tricorder, this multi-functional hand-held device can be used to scan, record and provide data analysis. It can handle all the functions of a computer, but it’s transportable and can be used by visiting physicians and emergency medical personnel.
5. National health information database–Electronic recording systems have been used for a while now, but only 6% of them meet all federal mandates. What’s more, they don’t all work well together in harmony. This leads to excessive work duplicated by humans,to enter the data into multiple databases. One national, then hopefully universal database,could save millions of dollars that are now being wasted. It is estimated that roughly 50% of “health care dollars” are used for this purpose and could be better used elsewhere if an efficient digital database is implemented.
6. Medical alert systems–Once used just by senior citizens living alone, this life-saving invention is now used by people of any age. People with chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart conditions use them too and the demographic is expanding to even include children. They can wear medical alerts to school, leisure activities or sporting events and can summon medical assistance in case of emergencies.
7. Long lasting batteries–Battery improvements for medical devices and other wearable items such as hearing aids, are evolving in many ways. Batteries that can be charged quicker, safer and cheaper are ideal. They are also being improved to hold their strength longer and last through thousands of recharging cycles.
8. Robotic nurse assistant – These new robots can help nurses and home caregivers lift a person “from” and “to” a bed or wheelchair. This will reduce work related injuries for allhealth care workers.
9. Better blood tests –Newer tests use only 1/1000 of the amount currently obtained froma normal blood test. Patients have better experiences when undergoing these tests and it reduces lab fees too.
10. Brain controlled prosthesis – Huge progress has been made in creating a prosthesis that is controlled by each user’s brain. The brain signals go directly to the socket and move it without the need for a motor or another body part for assistance. Amputees can see more normal movement of their prosthesis than ever before.
These are just the most commonly used improvements in our medical technology field. There are so many more that are available now or in the testing stages. The future is not only bright for technological advancements but it’s also right around the corner!