Top Health Care IT Trends to Watch For

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Advances in technology continue to create opportunities for health care professionals

Technological advancements have made health care more accessible than ever before, enabling providers to more efficiently diagnose patients and deliver high-quality care.

To take full advantage of these advancements, providers and administrators need to remain current on the latest health care IT trends, adapting to emerging tools and protocols in a way that prioritizes clinical efficiency and patient outcomes. Advanced degree programs, such as the online Master of Science in Health Informatics, can equip professionals to navigate the ever-shifting landscape of technology in health care administration, clinical practice and care delivery.

What’s Next in Health Care IT?

The following health care IT trends, which are already impacting the medical field, are likely to become increasingly prominent in the near future.

IoT

As part of the internet of things (IoT), regular medical devices are connected to the internet, allowing them to harvest data, gather analytics and give providers additional insight into patient symptoms and trends. IoT connectivity has significantly enhanced the diagnostic power of blood glucose monitors, asthma inhalers, and even blood pressure cuffs and scales. By connecting these devices to data-harvesting tools, providers can gain actionable insights.

Real-Time Patient Tracking

Another important health care IT trend is real-time patient tracking. With the use of barcoded bracelets or tags, medical teams can know patients’ real-time locations at all times, which assists doctors and nurses in more expediently meeting patient needs. This is a boon not only to patients but also to health care organizations, which can turn over beds more rapidly and thus see more patients.

Big Data

Clinicians have a wealth of patient data available to them, which can be invaluable for identifying population health trends and seeking proven solutions. However, because this data is so vast and unwieldy, it can prove challenging for a person or even a full team to make sense of it. Big data applications provide medical organizations with key conclusions that have been processed via machine learning, turning raw data into insights that can enhance the delivery of care.

Wearables

Increasingly commonplace, wearable technology is especially useful in health care. By attaching devices to their bodies, patients can get an accurate reflection of their key wellness indicators throughout the day. Providers can evaluate information from these connected devices and mine it for important trends.

Telehealth

Voice and video conferencing tools make it easy for doctors to consult with patients even when they are not in the same room, which has far-ranging implications. Telehealth facilitates health care access in rural areas and allows providers to better manage the utilization of health care.

AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) can assist health care professionals by providing supplemental knowledge based on the intensive analysis. This can yield more accurate diagnoses and improved patient outcomes.

Blockchain Technology Applications

At its core, blockchain is a fast and secure method for recording and storing transaction records and can have big implications for personal health records. The application of blockchain technology puts the patient at the center of the health care experience and can lead to medical records that are easily accessible to different physicians at no expense of privacy or security.

Benefits of a Master of Science in Health Informatics

Technology offers medical providers new avenues for improving patient care. But practitioners can’t be expected to keep up with the latest health care IT trends by themselves. What makes these breakthroughs truly useful is the presence of skilled health care IT professionals. A Master of Science in Health Informatics provides foundational skills to navigate rapidly changing technologies.

Program Goals

The goal of the online Master of Science in Health Informatics at the University of Illinois at Chicago is to prepare students for work in a field that’s shifting constantly, where new technologies and trends emerge rapidly. The program seeks to offer students subject matter expertise about informatics and information systems in health care, plus a high level of comfort with the dynamic role that IT can play in advanced medical organizations. As a result, graduates can aim to develop and implement informatics frameworks that improve clinical performance and efficiency, simultaneously enhancing patient care.

Skills Needed

In pursuit of these program goals, students can acquire a number of relevant skills, including data mining and analysis, database design, programming, strategic planning, reporting and project management. In turn, graduates are equipped to develop health care IT programs that are both effective and adaptable, evolving in accordance with changing trends.

Build a Career in Health Informatics

Leveraging new technology in health care provides a continuing opportunity for professionals. To learn more about health informatics and how a background in this field can be useful for pursuing a wide range of careers, connect with the online Master of Science in Health Informatics at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Recommended Readings

Big Data and Wearable Health Monitors: Harnessing the Benefits and Overcoming Challenges
Data Analytics and Informatics in Health Care: 5 Tools Professionals Should Know
Applying Technology to Improve Health Care: What Is Health Care IT?

Sources

Deloitte, “Blockchain: Opportunities for Health Care”
Forbes, “Top 6 Digital Transformation Trends In Healthcare for 2019”
Health Data Management, “12 Trends That Will Dominate Healthcare IT in 2019”
Medical Economics, “Top 4 Healthcare Trends for 2019”
SearchHealthIT, “5 Healthcare Technology Trends CIOs Should Watch in 2019”