In Star Trek: The Next Generation, medical diagnosis is almost instant. Doctor Beverley Crusher moves a hand scanner over her patient, and the computer reads out an accurate prognosis.
Unlike smartphones and sliding doors, this sci fi prediction has yet to pass, but tech is rapidly transforming healthcare – especially during COVID-19.
GovInsider spoke with Erich Gerber, SVP EMEA and APJ at TIBCO Software, to hear of the tech trends taking healthcare to infinity and beyond.
“The pandemic has increased adoption of online medical consultations or telemedicine around the world”, Gerber notes. This will continue after COVID-19, he believes, where users have enjoyed the convenience, and practitioners have not been limited by geography.
Data analytics can play a vital role, he notes, helping target diseases, spot symptoms and trends, and share with public health agencies in case of disease clusters.
Chronic conditions, in particular, can be managed better with tech. Singapore’s Health Promotion Board is trialling the use of smart watches to send HPB real time information on heart rates to promote healthier lifestyles, while the Ministry of Health Transformation Office is promoting bluetooth monitoring during telehealth consultations for people with diabetes. “The demand will increase for wearable devices that measure patients’ relevant physical data,” Gerber believes.
Challenges to overcome
“The physical limitations enforced by the governments as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic have affected beyond those who have caught the virus,” Gerber cautions. There have been declines in hospital admissions for heart failures, strokes, and illnesses that would otherwise have required immediate attention.
Advanced analytics here can help save lives, he notes. It can help schedule and prioritise medical cases; spot patients at risk; and support on treatments – particularly for elderly patients with many conditions – for people who might not seek attention at present and try to struggle on alone.
The University of Chicago Medicine has trusted TIBCO on a vast array of cases including better cardiac arrest prevention, increased operating room efficiency, advanced patient identification, and reduced readmissions, Gerber notes.
TIBCO is the world’s leading data analytics provider, and it prioritises making hospitals’ lives easier. Many have different data sets and face the challenges of siloed data. The TIBCO Connected Intelligence platform can overcome this issue, ensuring that doctors get the insights they require.
“Healthcare institutions today require a data virtualisation platform that can then seamlessly integrate all their data sources without major disruption”, Gerber says. Benefits include better collaboration, enhanced capability to predict critical conditions, and patient-centric healthcare.
Data security is paramount, he continues. There have been many instances where hospitals have been hacked. They need systems and processes that can guarantee that their data can only be accessible by authorised personnel in order to protect patients’ privacy.
Greenway Health, meanwhile, has used TIBCO’s Mashery API Management to improve revenues by $1.4m. It broke free of its legacy systems, treating more patients and supporting an additional increase in new cases.
This has been a testing year for the heroes of Asia’s healthcare sector. TIBCO stands ready to help them boldly go further, seeking out new patient outcomes, and creating the next generation of healthcare.