Last year, we predicted our critical hot topics for healthcare that we expected to advance throughout the year. Although we have come a long way in a short amount of time, there are still ways that technology will advance so that patients have better outcomes and increased engagement. This year, we expect to see more innovations that utilize AI to increase patient engagement, increase personalized care options for patients, more VR options to provide immersive virtual care, and more collaborations with wearables.
Advancing Generative AI in 2024
Although AI is already being used to help make predictive treatments, it’s no surprise that AI is expected to grow. Overall, we should expect AI to be easier to train . This is crucial because medical data is not always available, or secured from patient data . Therefore, there is a need to use real data without compromising patient security, or to create synthetic data that resembles real-date . Furthermore, generative AI is also expected to streamline workflows, allowing providers more time to see patients . AI will also help patient literacy and engagement, by providing patients with personalized communication . For instance, AI may make personalized reminders for patients that help promote patient engagement. AI is expected to become more effective this year and be implemented more successfully to promote patient and provider engagement.
Advancing Personalized Care in 2024
Although we’ve come a long way in 2023 with personalized care, a lot more progress is still needed to be able to use genomics to accurately make predictions. For instance, personalized medicine will be used to create targeted treatments that cater to each patient’s specific profile . This is critical for patients who may not be responding to treatments offered to other patients for similar symptoms or diseases. These treatment options will instead be catered to patients with similar genes or biomarkers that show promising outcomes. Therefore, in 2023, more work will be done to treat patients based on their genetic profile . This will mean being selected for specific therapies, clinical trials, or treatment options that are catered to their specific genome .
Furthermore, in 2024 we should see personalized care advancing to where it also includes a way to test how effective a treatment option will be before it is administered to a patient. For instance, more biomarkers and genes will be marked as successful for different treatment plans. This will effectively help doctors prevent adverse health effects and pick out the best course of action for patients. Being able to determine how effective a treatment will be for a patient will also prevent delays in care and will help patients save on costs over time. Overall, personalized care will continue to advance in 2024 so that patients have predictable outcomes.
Remote Care Therapies Implement Wearable Technologies
Wearables are becoming increasingly effective at providing patients with continuous care and monitoring. However, more work is needed to integrate wearables with other technologies. For instance, while telehealth services are being used, wearables will also be used in conjunction to provide doctors with real-time data. Furthermore, wearables will also be expected to determine adherence in patients. This may be as simple as reminding patients to take their medications or reminding them to make time for their physical therapies. Furthermore, wearables will also be used with AI to track abnormalities based on the patient’s medications and individual baseline. This will help detect worsening symptoms earlier and will lead to quicker interventions. Overall, wearable technologies will advance remote therapies, especially when used in collaboration with other technologies.
Virtual Reality Integration in 2024
As seen last year, the use of virtual reality is beginning to factor into care options offered to patients. However, in 2024, we should see VR being used to provide a more immersive remote experience for patients . For instance, this may be used during an annual check-up, or to diagnose minor health conditions that may be diagnosed visually . Overall, this will help patients in rural areas receive more options for care and will help them feel more connected during the virtual visit. Furthermore, this will also be used in conjunction with wearable devices, so that providers have access to real-time data during visits .
Another concept that we should see this year is the increased use of digital twins. Digital wins are virtual models usually of an object or device to stimulate how it’s affected under different conditions . However, digital twins may also be used as models for a patient or their organs . This will help show how a patient or a body system may react to changes in treatment, medication, and even lifestyle choices . Furthermore, this virtual model will be used to stimulate risky surgeries before they are implemented . Overall, virtual reality and virtual models will have a greater role in how predictive and immersive care are utilized.
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