Technology investment in the healthcare sector

Our first monthly Pulse of 2018 asked the M3 Global Research community their opinions on technology investment in healthcare. The healthcare sector has experienced dramatic changes over the last 25 years and will likely continue to change and evolve in the immediate future. Technology is already powering new models of care and disrupting traditional ideas about care provision. However, the level of investment will become a key driver in the speed of delivery. For this Pulse survey we asked healthcare professionals which areas of potential technology investment they think would have the most impact patients over the next five years. Participants could choose up to three of the following:

  1. Preventative medicine (home test kits, measures for disease prevention and identification of risk factors)
  2. Self-diagnosis (recognising or identifying medical conditions for oneself using online resources)
  3. Telemedicine (online or telephone consultations with HCPs without face-to-face contact)
  4. Social prescribing (a means of enabling primary care professionals to refer patients to a range of local, non-clinical services)
  5. Self-care (actions that individuals take for themselves in order to protect, maintain and improve their health or wellbeing)
  6. Care navigation (using signposting and information to help patients and their carers identify their treatment and care options)
  7. Patient access to online health records (patients can access, electronically, their own records from all primary and secondary care interactions)
  8. Other

January’s Pulse revealed that the majority of respondents in Europe, Canada, and the US believe that telemedicine, with 2,752 votes, is the area of technological investment that will most improve patient care over the next five years.  This might include Skype consultations, or digital clinics, and would be particularly useful in improving access to care in remote areas or for specialist treatment. Preventive medicine followed as the next most popular option, with 2,495 votes, and was particularly popular in the United States. Preventative medicine is seen to be a way of reducing healthcare costs, and also improve efficacy of treatments by early diagnosis, and so might include the  development of home testing kits, for example. Social prescribing was deemed to have the least potential impact, with only 485 votes, but this could be because its application is less well understood outside the UK, where it is quickly gaining traction. In the UK, primary care clinicians are able to refer patients to a range of local, non-clinical services, often provided by the voluntary and community sector, thus reducing costs for the NHS.

In Europe specifically, results broadly reflected the global findings, with 2,710 professionals surveyed in UK, Germany, France, Spain and Italy choosing telemedicine as the area of technological investment that they thought would most improve patient care over the next five years. Preventive medicine followed, with 2,436 votes. Social prescribing was the option with the least votes, with 485.

healthcare sector

Interestingly, in the USA results were different. Preventive medicine was chosen as the area of technological investment that will most improve patient care over the next five years, with 1,136. Telemedicine came in second, with 517 votes. Self-diagnosis apps were deemed to have the least potential impact, with only 86 votes.

Technology investment

By registering with M3 Global Research you will receive the monthly Pulse straight to your inbox so you can give your opinion about topical healthcare-related issues and compare your thoughts with those of your colleagues around the world.

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