Over the past decade, several home health options have become available thanks to improvements in technology. And due to recent events, they’ve never been more popular.
While the coronavirus pandemic is the driving force behind the increased demand for these resources, the utilization of home health options is likely here to stay. The following are five examples of modern technology enabling greater access to healthcare at home:
Many ailments and illnesses are worth talking to a doctor about but not necessarily pressing enough to require hands-on medical attention. Patients’ ability to consult their physicians via mobile devices has proven to be a real game-changer in healthcare. Sore throats, sprained ankles, and sleepless nights are just some of the health concerns that can be partly or even wholly addressed via video consultation with a licensed physician.
Medical testing done in the privacy of your own home has been around for a while. For obvious reasons, at-home HIV test kits and those for other genetically transmitted infections are the most commonly used. Tests for medicine use have also been popular for years. However, in the age of coronavirus, testing for SARs and influenza viruses at home is seeing increased demand. There are also home testing kits for Lyme disease and diabetes.
While the golden age of doctors making house calls is long gone, some physicians occasionally visit their patients at home. However, doctors aren’t the only medical professionals able to provide treatment to patients, and many others are more able and willing to make house calls. These include home health aides, registered nurses, and nurse practitioners. Thanks to mobile app technology and advanced scheduling software, healthcare providers have an easier time arranging and fulfilling house calls in a cost-effective manner. Though tremendous precautions are taken due to COVID-19, these medical experts are working around the clock to visit those too sick or infirm to leave their places of residence.
Again, near-universal access to smartphones has made it easier to achieve positive health outcomes at home. This time, it’s the ability to have prescriptions written, refilled, and even delivered all from your couch. It’s a game-changing medical advancement for anyone having trouble getting around due to illness or injury. And in the age of coronavirus, the ability to get your medications at home has never been more convenient.
The doctor has taken a look, the tests have been taken, follow-ups have happened if needed, and prescriptions have been filled if necessary, all thanks to advances in tech. The next step is monitoring patients at home in the days, weeks, and months after treatment. Wearable technology, like Apple Watch and Fitbit, can reliably monitor a variety of biometric readings. The data gathered can be instrumental in helping doctors and nurses uncover any undiagnosed conditions. What’s more, several dedicated monitoring devices can be used at home to check for disruptions to bodily functions, many of which are getting smaller and less invasive every year.
With so many people spending so much more time at home, it’s no surprise there’s been an uptick in reliance on home health options. However, it’s safe to assume the popularity will endure long after the pandemic is overdue to their convenience and affordability.