The Future of Healthcare: How Physicians Can Prepare Themselves
As a physician, you understand that changes in healthcare are inevitable. Disruption–especially via technology–can shift the medical landscape rapidly (for instance, the response to COVID-19). So keeping ahead of changes is crucial to delivering positive outcomes.
Here are some 2022 trends to follow in order to keep pace toward the future of healthcare.
Track Non-Traditional Players
There was a time when pharma and medical technology companies drove the way healthcare is delivered. But that is no longer the case. Large, multinational corporations are starting to lead the way. Recent examples include:
- Mark Cuban recently launched a low-cost pharmacy to lower the cost of medication.
- Apple is currently integrating its information with electronic health record (EHR) vendors. The plan is to turn its products into portable clinical research tools.
- Alphabet, Google’s parent company, is using its cloud platform AI to help solve issues with EHR interoperability.
These are just a few samples of recent disruption in healthcare. To stay current, you should explore the latest offerings by these non-traditional players. For example, you might be able to recommend Cuban’s new pharmacy in the future to patients who need lower-cost options for their medication.
Embrace Healthcare Automation
A recent survey of healthcare providers by Stanford Medicine found that they expected about one-third of their job to be automated by 2040. As technology evolves, many tasks that once seemed only possible with human intelligence are increasingly given to AI and machine learning.
While much of healthcare will always require physicians to make critical judgment calls and provide the human element to healthcare, data and automation are already shaping how providers work.
To adjust to these changes, consider exploring the latest innovations in medical technology, especially automation. The same Stanford Medicine study found that most medical students and almost 50% of doctors seek training for this automated future. Some key areas of study include coding, advanced statistics, population health, artificial intelligence, and genetic counseling. Opening yourself up to new technology will help you prepare for a world where medicine will run on data science.
Emphasize Physician Mental Health
Caring for your own mental health is critical to providing quality care in the long run, yet self-care is more challenging than ever. With the increase in burnout and global physician shortages, it is easy to feel overwhelmed, unable to adapt to significant changes in medicine or new technologies. One recent survey found healthcare providers expected pressure and burnout to increase in the next decade.
As disruptions continue to occur, addressing why you may be stressed and taking steps to minimize burnout should be a top priority as you adapt to a changing environment.
Develop a Disruptive Mindset
Changes in medical care will challenge existing paradigms. As a doctor, it is critical that you adopt a positive mindset around future disruptions. This means adopting a healthy attitude about change, learning new technologies, keeping up on new businesses, and prioritizing mental health.
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