With the last year throwing everyone’s lives into disarray, it’s been quite easy to get lost in the transition of the ‘new normal’ and focus solely on the day-to-day. With workers in the health & social care industries already suffering from severe underfunding and overwhelming demand, the pandemic didn’t leave much room for a complete overhaul of daily processes.
However, with the vaccine being distributed across the country and lockdown measures starting to ease it seems that our health and social care workers can start to wind down and take a breath.
Maybe now is the right time to be thinking ahead and asking ourselves what does the future of health and social care look like?
The future of healthcare relies on technology integration
With the proliferation and accessibility of technology in today’s culture, even the oldest members of our families know how to operate smartphones, it would seem a waste to not take advantage of this opportunity for the future of our care industries.
mHealth solutions ease the burden of monitoring residents from carer staff. This creates time for care workers, allowing them to focus more direct care on the residents/ patients who need it the most.
mHealth monitoring tech can come in the form of a wearable smartwatch, tracking vulnerable residents’ vitals to alert staff when they drop below a desirable rate so they know exactly when to check up on them and what is the problem before they get there.
Closing the gap
One catastrophic effect the pandemic had on all of us was this forced isolation, not being able to leave your house or interact with others caused a lasting impact on the country’s mental health.
This, of course, was amplified for our vulnerable parts of the population. However, with the implementation of technology it’s possible to close the physical gap between vulnerable people and the people they rely on for support.
One big factor during this lockdown was the implementation of virtual meeting software like zoom and Microsoft teams, this has allowed people to stay connected and will probably be something we see stick around. As the ability to support and manage vulnerable patients can be significantly streamlined (even for the most remote).
Although nothing can replace in-person support there now does exist an integrated solution that will mean vulnerable people never have to suffer completely on their own again.
The future of healthcare will put trust in the data
Data will have to become an integral part of the healthcare system and its future. With the proper implementation in daily processes data can help carers to deliver the best possible level of care, this has huge advantages to both the health and safety of residents/patients and the sustainability of private care institutions such as care homes as they can operate with maximum efficiency.
With patient records stored digitally, the needed information can be pulled up instantly on any mobile device by multiple people. This hugely cuts down the time it takes for nurses or carers to look up previous records and put to action the care and attention required. All whilst taking as little time as possible away from caring for patients/ residents.
Another great benefit this movement of digitising records will bring is a community working together. The data provided by digital health records can be used on a local and national government level to help influence policies and the allocation of resources to the areas that need it most.
With patient data available digitally, individual institutions will be able to analyse relevant information and assess a potential outbreak. This information provides key insights and will help dictate what actions need to be taken to prevent further infections throughout your residents.
With knowledge like this in a post-COVID world, we can see how the future of healthcare is going to be equipping itself with the tools necessary to prevent outbreaks like COVID happening on such a large scale again.
The care industry has been stuck in its ways for far too long and the impact of COVID-19 has really awakened a need for things to change. By looking at how existing technologies can come together we can work to make the lives and processes of both carers and patients better.
If you’d like to see what technologies we offer to make the lives of care homes better then please get in touch about a free trial of Gather Care today.
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