9 Technologies Driving Innovation in Healthcare

Major health innovations are happening all the time. Some right here in Colorado. We are exploring the innovations that could affect your health in the next few years… or sooner!

What Makes This Time in Our History Prime for Technological Advancements?

One of the biggest reasons for seeing so much innovation around technology and healthcare is the convergence of several technologies. For instance, you can now measure your blood pressure with your Smart Phone. This convergence is expected to influence how we access health care and its cost.

9 technologies driving innovation:

  1. Telemedicine – diagnosing and treating patients through telecommunications technology. An example of this would be Teladoc. Most insurance plans currently use this technology – check your plan.
  2. Big Data – large sets of data that are analyzed by a computer that can reveal trends. For instance, with enough data scientists can create algorithms to provide early warning signs of diseases like cancer, diabetes and more.
  3. Robotics – a branch of technology dealing with the construction or application of robots. We’re seeing a lot of advancements in robots these days regarding amputees. Robotics is also allowing doctors to perform complicated procedures more precisely.
  4. Artificial Intelligence – development of computer systems that can perform tasks normally done by humans. In a recent study at Stanford, AI did as well as a dermatologist in identifying skin cancer.
  5. 3D Printing – making a physical object from a three-dimensional digital model. It’s quite amazing. It’s done by laying down thin layers of material in a succession. Recently, a man in Australia received a 3D printed shin bone and was able to avoid having his leg amputated thanks to this technology.
  6. Regeneration – involving tissue engineering and molecular biology, doctors can replace or regenerate human cells, tissues or organs to help restore them to normal function. The Mayo Clinic has a center just for regenerative medicine.
  7. Social Media – we all know what social media is, but just in case you’ve been living under a rock the last 15 years, just ask a friend to show you their Facebook account. Social media has been a great tool for education. Many organizations, including 9Health Fair, use social media to reach out to their audience about health issues that may be affecting their lives. The hope is to give our audience more education so they can make the positive changes they need to own their health.
  8. Health Sensors – think Fitbit on steroids. Sensors give people all kinds of information about their health. Some devices will not only measure but also offer a diagnosis for certain diseases.
  9. Nanotechnology – this involves applications of nanoparticles under development and long-range research of repairs at the cellular level. Currently, most of this technology is geared toward drug delivery. According to an abstract in the U.S. National Library of Medicine, “The importance of nanotechnology in drug delivery is in the concept and ability to manipulate molecules and supramolecular structures for producing devices with programmed functions.”

With this explosion of innovation, we’re curious as to what you’re seeing out there or what you would like to see that does not yet exist. For example, wouldn’t it be great if there was a machine you could walk into that had the capability to just scan your body and let you know if you had a disease? No blood work necessary, just walk in, scan and then a printed report to let you know if anything was wrong with you. What would you like to see? Share with us on our Facebook Page.

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