The future of healthcare: AI and Telemedicine

When we talk about the future of healthcare, AI and telemedicine are the two things that go together.Telemedicine refers to providing remote medical care, consultation and doctor- patient communication using audio or visual tools of telecommunication. Telemedicine has become quite useful for patients and doctors alike for providing healthcare remotely. IT is already revolutionizing the healthcare industry but with the integration of AI in telemedicine, healthcare providers can have assistance and quick diagnosis and treatment plans.  

According to a 2019 report from MIT, 75% of the professionals said that AI had made better predictions for the treatment of the disease. 78% of healthcare providers experienced improvements in the workflow. 79% of the healthcare professionals admitted that integration of AI has helped them reduce their burnout.  The results exhibit a prominent role played by AI in telemedicine.

The role of AI in Healthcare

AI can play a very crucial role in telemedicine. Data analysis, remote monitoring, providing assistance in diagnosis and disease management, are just a few instances where AI can help in improving patient care. Following are the way AI is  being used in telemedicine

  • Efficient decision making process:

In health care, every single second counts. Care providers have to make quick decisions while treating a patient. AI with its quick data analysis ability can help care providers with quick diagnosis and treatment plans. AI can also help in triage assisting healthcare providers to prioritize patients needing critical care.

  • Predictive Data analysis:

AI has the ability to analyze large amounts of data in a short time, assisting in the early diagnosis as well as predictive analysis. It can help the radiologists in predicting the anomalies or any abnormalities in the medical images. 

  • Administrative efficiency:

AI can help with administrative tasks reducing the time spent on the paperwork. According to the above mentioned study, the medical providers who have integrated AI in their medical practices declared that AI helped in reducing the clinical error. Healthcare providers also reported that with AI managing administrative tasks they can actually spend more time providing healthcare to patients. 

Benefits of AI in telemedicine:

Patient care has never been better than it is today with remote healthcare services or telemedicine. Now add AI to the field and see the marvel unravel in the near future. AI and telemedicine are the future of the healthcare system. Not the patients , the health care providers can also benefit from the synergy of AI and telemedicine in the following ways.     

  • Real time remote monitoring:

AI tools can help with real time remote monitoring of critical patients, and can even intervene in case of any changes in the patient’s vital signs. AI can detect changes in the patient’s conditions that may not be apparent to the healthcare provider such as irregular heartbeat or low glucose levels in diabetics.   

  • Timely diagnosis:

One benefit of AI is that it can quickly analyze a patient’s medical data including medical history, any genetic conditions or the genetic history as well. With the help of such critical info AI can help healthcare providers in predictive analysis and early diagnosis resulting in optimal healthcare for the patients.  

  • Optimal Treatment Plan

Early diagnosis can lead to an optimal treatment plan. AI can also help in generating personalized treatment plans that will take into account any genetic history of the patient. 

AI Virtual assistants in telemedicine:

AI driven virtual assistants, who would have thought. It’s like we are already living in the future. However it is just the beginning. AI virtual assistants can help in streamlining appointments, in initial patient triage. You can even communicate to AI driven virtual assistants in any language of your choice making communication easier. 

  • Appointments: 

Virtual assistants can help streamline administrative tasks such as scheduling and managing appointments, sending reminders and reducing no- show rates as well. 

  • Patient Triage:

 AI driven virtual assistants, can help in the initial triage of the patients by assessing the urgency of their medical needs. On the basis of the assessment they can refer the patient to the relevant specialist or physician. 

  • Transcription and Translation services: 

AI virtual assistants are well reversed in multilingual communication, ensuring healthcare for patients with a diverse range of language preferences. 

AI-driven personalized patient care in telemedicine:

AI is taking healthcare into the new era, where you as a patient are at the heart of the healthcare system. AI helps in providing patient centric, tailored treatment and can also detect any mental/behavioral health issues at an early stage.  

  •  Patient centric care:

AI driven patient care places the patient at the heart of the healthcare system. Through data analysis, and real time remote monitoring AI can help physicians in developing a personalized health care plan for each individual. It has the ability to suggest optimized treatment plans while taking into consideration the genetic history of the patient. 

  • Behavioural Health support:

Personalized health care extends to behavioral health support as well. AI is equipped to detect behavioral health issues such as anxiety, and depression. AI can also alert the physicians  for timely intervention if it picks up on any severe mental/behavioral health issues. 

The future of AI and telemedicine in Healthcare:

AI is on the road to revolutionize the healthcare system. Here are some key features that will be revolutionary with integration of AI in healthcare:

  • Early disease detection:

AI will become more efficient in the early detection of diseases, which ultimately will help in prognosis and better treatment outcomes. 

  • Telemedicine and remote care:

Remote care will become more accessible, and patients will be able to receive quality healthcare services from the comfort of their home. During virtual consultations AI will be able to make assessments that are accurate and free of human error. 

  • Health data management:

Management and integration of EHRs will be more streamlined and up to date with the help of AI, providing physicians with more time to practice medicine. 

The Bottom Line:

As technology continues to evolve, the correlation between AI and telemedicine will play an important role in making healthcare accessible and affordable for the people living in the areas with poor healthcare facilities.  It will be fundamental to enforce the belief that healthcare is for all beyond any geographic barriers.

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