Coronavirus has fuelled an exponential growth in digital health solutions, including telemedicine and other forms of remote/virtual care. In the Asia-Pacific region, digital health is expected to strengthen, as a new health trend barometer report identifies that a considerable number of healthcare organisations in the region are focusing on enhancing their electronic health record (EHR) capabilities and providing more patient-centric tools to improve access to care.
“Awareness of digital technology’s value is the key success factor (of digital health innovations) in both Singapore and South Korea in my opinion. Policymakers and C-suites should always focus on the purpose of digital technology,” said Dr Hwang Hee, CIO, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, South Korea, commenting on the findings of the report.
Significant growth opportunity in the MENA region
Elsewhere, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) for the Arab states is looking to embrace big data analytics, which will enhance the quality of care for patients in the region while also driving down healthcare costs.
A survey conducted by Protiviti – a global consultancy firm – across the GCC and India reveals that 80 per cent of respondents (industry leaders and C-suite executives) believe analytics help organisations improve their performance and accountability, and 46 per cent reasoned that they could improve their data governance. The survey also noted that the healthcare analytics market in the MENA region is projected to reach US$1.49 billion by 2024.
“While the existing usage of analytics is focused on revenue cycle functions to address effective and efficient payment cycles, the potential to use specific applications such as artificial intelligence and predictive analytics could lead to substantial improvement of patient care and patient throughput,” the survey read.
It also noted that the aggregation, standardisation and addition of analytical tools could enable data to offer highly valuable insights, which could help regulators, healthcare providers, scientists and other associated industries prevent and treat infectious diseases.
“This can also lead to lower costs, increase efficiency, comply with reporting and regulatory requirements, besides helping interact with patients and consumers more effectively,” it read. “Developing and implementing a healthcare analytics strategy is a critical requirement for future success in a data-rich environment.”
In a recent study, Imperial College London’s Institute of Global Health Innovation highlighted how digitisation of health services can improve access to care, quality of care and user engagement.