Digital health trends_2021

Due to the immense transformation in Medicine, caused by facing the pandemic, 2021 will be a very different year for doctors. The biggest global challenge to date has caused behavioral changes, anticipating the future, as is the case with telemedicine.  However, this almost surreal year came to an end, leaving behind some marked changes, in social dynamics, mainly motivated by the pandemic, and which should impact us going forward. 

Thus, while entering 2021, it is necessary to keep an eye on the trends that have emerged in recent months to choose more solid paths in the health market, and we will talk about them below.

5G: from promises to deployment

5G will gradually be deployed in 2021 all over the world after the licenses have been awarded. Beyond the passionate debate on 5G on various topics such as (ecological concerns, expected technological benefits, impact on human health, costs, etc.), this technological development will have a significant impact on the world of health.

In particular, 5G will promote the democratization and deployment of connected objects and telemedicine because the connection will be increased tenfold, white areas almost non-existent and users will be able to benefit from virtually no latency. 

This technology will benefit healthcare players: 

  • Acceleration of the deployment of connected objects 
  • Medical imaging: the fluidity of exchanges between city and hospital Development of tele-surgery 
  • Deployment of virtual and augmented reality 
  • Tele-monitoring and telemedicine

Mobile apps 

The proliferation of mobile applications in the field of health has led to the appearance of a new term such as “mHealth “. According to the World Health Organization – WHO – mHealth is defined as the practice of medicine and public health supported by mobile devices such as telephones, patient monitoring devices, digital assistants, and other wireless devices. 

Within mHealth, mobile applications are the protagonists. It has been estimated that there are around 5,000 million people with a smartphone worldwide. And 50% of the time they spend with this device is used for the use of apps. For this reason, technology companies have seen a vein in the development of mobile applications aimed at promoting health care.

Thus, you will find numerous apps, whose functions can range from establishing a weekly diet plan to lose weight, to control the monitoring of patients with diseases such as diabetes or epilepsy.  For all this, mobile apps have been a trend in 2020 and will continue to be in 2021.

Apps and wearables 

Today, smartwatches and applications for smartphones have a wide range of functions that allow real-time monitoring of our organism. These tools have been widely adopted in the fitness world, capable of capturing heart rate and the number of calories lost. Now applications and so-called wearables, that is, usable devices, such as smart watches, are also being used in healthcare. The services that offer monitoring solutions are evolving more and more. Today, it is possible to monitor the health data of patients with chronic diseases, such as diabetics, by measuring blood sugar levels or the amount of oxygen in the blood in cases of respiratory diseases.

Artificial Intelligence in Digital Health 

Artificial intelligence will play a huge role in the digital transformation of healthcare. The AI ​​healthcare market is expected to surpass $ 34 billion by 2025. The future of AI lies in precision medicine, genomics, drug discovery, and medical imaging. Already, using pattern recognition with these technologies, doctors can prescribe personalized cancer treatment plans that are tailored to the patient’s genetic makeup and lifestyle. Pharmaceutical and biotech companies are using machine learning algorithms to shorten the drug development cycle. 

And, more recently, scientists in the United States have developed an algorithm that accurately recognizes and diagnoses COVID -19, even in asymptomatic patients, simply by the sound of a cough. Overall, the global market for AI-based diagnostics is expected to reach nearly $ 67 billion by 2027.

Wrapping Up

It was not new that technology would play a fundamental role in health in 2021, right? The expectations for the coming years are for an increasingly stronger partnership between health and technological tools. Besides, the new coronavirus pandemic has reinforced the failures and challenges that the health system faces daily. 

Let’s hope the year 2021 begins with the promise of evolution in health and overcoming the obstacles that impacted this year!

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