The Wheel of Massive Change: Why Healthcare Must Embrace Digital Technology

Laura Bourdeanu  |

Written by Laura Bourdeanu and Dr. Hannah Luu

Sometimes it’s strange to think that in today’s day and age—where you can go on the internet to shop, make travel arrangements, or book movie tickets— there isn’t a place to find the most up-to-date health information verified by doctors. Unlike many other industries, the healthcare sector has been extremely slow in embracing digital technology as a tool for large-scale change due to the complexity of medical treatments. While you can Google (GOOG) your symptoms or research illnesses on sites like WebMD, these platforms aren’t personalized to your specific health diagnosis. Until recently, this type of platform just didn’t exist.

However, the health industry has begun to embrace the trend toward digital health and is making progress in terms of relying on digital solutions to modern day healthcare problems. The role of digital technology in healthcare for patients is to prevent extra worry and anxiety by arming patients with the information they need. Digital healthcare is set to revolutionize the medical industry and save both patients and doctors time and money.

The Scope of Digital Change

There are a lot of areas where the existing digital technology has made massive inroads in healthcare. The healthcare sector is currently using digital technology to enhance interactions between doctors and patients and to educate patients about their diseases and treatments. It is striving to not just improve the quality of human life but also the quality of the available treatment options. Instead of the patient’s seeking healthcare facilities, digital technology is bringing the healthcare facilities to those patients.

All these functions serve to make the healthcare system, overall, more efficient. Some of the key areas where this efficiency needs to be maximized include assistive technologies to aid rehabilitation. Digital technology can help create computational simulations leading to better treatments. Another key area of activity is e-health, where the digital means can be used to store and transmit data. This way, we can deliver healthcare information and services in real-time.

The Digital Healthcare Innovation Cycle

If we set out to observe the digital innovation process in the healthcare sector, we can see five distinct processes or areas of activity. Experts in digital healthcare have identified these five processes as the components of an innovation cycle in digital healthcare. The cycle goes from identification of the problem, to the implementation of the solution, to the evaluation of the outcome.

There are Five Main Processes in the Innovation Cycle:

1. Identifying the Problem: What? When? Who? How?

The effectiveness of the digital solution depends on the correct identification of the problem. How well we define the problem has a direct and significant impact on the quality of the solution we offer. But how exactly do we see a problem? What is a problem anyway? The problem can range anywhere from the needs of the patients to a certain inability of the healthcare service providers. Only when we have a true definition of the problem, and the repercussions of that problem, can we move on to the next step.

2. Conducting Scientific Research: Start at the Drawing Board

After identifying the problem, the next step would naturally be to work toward finding the solution. For that, we need to do a couple of things first. Two of those things stand out among the rest. First, we need to review the existing literature to know more about current technologies that may be used to solve the problem at hand. Second, and more importantly, if the technologies don’t exist, we need to figure out a way to develop those.

3. Preparing the Solution: Roll up the Proverbial Sleeves

Designing the solution is, in many ways, the most crucial step in the process. It is the step that involves a range of experts across industries, each of whom can contribute in their own crucial way. The solution needs to be clean and simple, extremely efficient, and user-friendly.

4. Performing the evaluation: Back to the Drawing Board?

Developing the technology is not an end. It is simply a means to reaching the end which, in this case, is user satisfaction. The way to ensure that satisfaction is performing the evaluation. The most popular way to do it is to test the technology in user groups. Clinical studies and trials are conducted to gauge the effectiveness of the solution.

5. Moving the Process Forward

On a macro level, the purpose of developing newer technologies is to move the whole process of digital innovation forward. It is a giant wheel that takes a lot of effort to turn. Using the knowledge gathered and the technology developed during the process, we can transform the healthcare industry for the better.

Connected Health

Digital healthcare technology, digital media, and smartphones all come together to form connected health. Also, known as technology-enabled care, connected health aims to integrate the use of technology into the conventional processes of healthcare.

Connected health also enables the patients to receive healthcare services without actively going outside of their home for it. The service delivery process can be conducted remotely. This makes the doctor’s office and hospital much less significant when it comes to healthcare.

That’s not it! Healthcare innovators are trying to come up with much more cost-effective solutions using the connected health technology. Cost has always been a cause of concern whenever it comes to the delivery of healthcare. The effective use of technology-enabled care can bring down those costs tremendously- making healthcare much more accessible to everyone not just in terms of reach, but in terms of cost as well.

Where We Stand

We at OncoGambit, consider ourselves one of the flag bearers of the digital revolution. Standing at the forefront of change, we realize how important the use of digital technology can be in terms of saving patients valuable time and money. We have concentrated our efforts in service of cancer patients. We focus on developing real-time cancer treatment tools. With that goal in mind, we have developed the first ever online personalized cancer treatment website, OncoGambit, which saves patients valuable time and money by providing them vital information to help them determine their treatment plan.

Our platform aggregates data of over 1100+ cancer professionals and allows patients to confirm their oncologist’s recommended treatment from anywhere, anytime with the use of their mobile device/ Internet connection. This allows patients to feel confident that they are selecting the right treatment plan for their diagnosis and empowers them to get started on the road to recovery sooner rather than later. In oncology, often times patients will have to wait long periods of time or drive far distances to get multiple opinions by specialists. This can often be a time consuming, costly, and stressful process. Our platform reduces that stress and allows the patient to focus on their treatment, while ensuring the best chance of survival.

We fully understand the impact digital technology can have on the healthcare industry and are proud to be leading the trend toward digital health. We believe digital health will not only save both doctors and patients time and money, it will lead to overall better standards of care.

DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions. To read our full disclosure, please go to:


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