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Intelligent automation in healthcare is defined as the control of diagnostic and therapeutic processes by mechanical or electronic means that enhance the ability of medical staff to monitor patients and make decisions. Automation in industrial production has made it possible to significantly increase production efficiency and the quality of final products for the consumer. Hospital automation essentially borrows many principles from factory automation, transferring them to the medical industry.
Automation of clinics and providing medical services at home increases the quality and reduces the cost of such services. Automation of medical institutions is designed to reduce patients’ risks, increase the flexibility of managing the healthcare system, and the efficiency of investments in the industry. In addition, it reduces the administrative burden on healthcare professionals, creates long-term business opportunities, and ultimately delivers better patient health outcomes. However, to realize the full benefits of automation in medical industry, healthcare professionals and patients themselves need to be informed about the benefits, technological limits, and future possibilities of automation.
In the future, healthcare companies will be at the forefront of healthcare that “put people first,” complementing human capabilities with new technologies rather than replacing people with machines. Technology will expand the possibilities of medicine and facilitate decision-making, freeing up space for developing personal qualities and social skills that form the individual elements of the health care system.
Consulting agency Accenture highlights five key factors shaping a new healthcare system that puts the person first. Intelligence automation, mobile workforce, platform economy, predictable transformation, and digital trust are among them. Together, these five pillars enhance the role of the individual in health care: the role of physicians, administrators, researchers, payers, and, of course, patients.
Let’s look at intelligent automation in healthcare. For doctors, intelligent automation expands diagnostics possibilities and speeds up the correct diagnosis. At every level of the healthcare system, from laboratories to aftercare, sensors collect data that can be used by doctors, nurses, and caregivers, as well as by patients themselves, to improve patient outcomes.
Benefits of Automation
Automation of the process of providing medical care helps reduce costs, reduce the number of errors and improve the performance of medical institutions. Rapidly rising health care costs and sectoral budgets, which often fail to consider population aging, the risks of civil unrest, and economic crises, make it necessary to find cost containment strategies.
Reducing the risk of medical error
Objectively and subjectively determined actions of a doctor that harm the health of the patient, unfortunately, are not rare. Wrong planning, wrong appointments, and other activities lead to inappropriate treatment. Mistakes in medicine are much more common than in other industries. In particular, the probability of dying in a plane crash is approximately 1/8,000,000. At the same time, there are from 2 to 5 deaths for every million injections of anesthesia, and for every million cases of blood transfusion, there are 29 cases of virus infection.
In addition, the vague definition of error contributes to the increase in the number of medical errors and the damage from them. Medical practices that do not comply with it may affect the quality of care, such as overuse or underuse of diagnostic or therapeutic procedures and technologies. Automation in healthcare significantly reduces the risk of medical errors.
The typical clinic employs a dozen doctors, including several for children. The manager must sort through all incoming patient requests and monitor the workload of each doctor in real-time to schedule appointments at the right time. Considering the human factor, the postponement of visits, and the growth in the flow of incoming applications, it becomes difficult to qualitatively monitor the workload of doctors and the relevance of the visit schedule. Missed patient reminders and overlays worsen patient satisfaction and the clinic’s reputation.
The clinic receives a significant number of incoming calls and applications. Most of them are in the “I just want to ask” format. There are no further actions with potential clients. The administrator answers calls but does not record information about them, while with the help of CRM, they could turn into actual customers.
Marketing budget savings
The clinic spends heavily on advertising and marketing to increase brand awareness. At the same time, there are no further communications with patients who have already visited the clinic.
Summing it up
The future of healthcare is inextricably linked with the development of digital medicine. Gradually, all simple cases of diseases will be treated by patients themselves using various information systems with elements of artificial intelligence. Such systems are not yet perfect, but they are constantly evolving. Doctors will be treated only in complicated cases, they will also be helped by information systems, but a person will still make the decision. The most important thing that will be required of a doctor is critical thinking and the ability to apply medical knowledge to each specific patient.
As a result of intelligent automation in healthcare, the time and accuracy of diagnosis will be reduced, medical literacy will increase, waiting times in queues will be reduced, and patient routes within the healthcare system will be simplified. Simply put, by combining the power of humans and machines, doctors will be able to operate at peak efficiency and truly take care of our health. Contact us if you want to learn more about what is automation in healthcare. Our specialists have solid expertise and experience in this topic.
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