What Is the Treatment Continuum and How Can Modern Technology Aid?

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What Is the Treatment Continuum and How Can Modern Technology Aid

The Introduction of Care Continuum

The care continuum model encompasses various health services, from emergency to preventive care and wellness care. Patients can avoid emergencies, doctor visits, and unnecessary medical expenses by continuously combating symptoms and embracing preventive care, but to achieve the desired outcome, we must integrate various health delivery systems and applicable technologies.

A Care Continuum Includes Different Entities

A successful Care Continuum model for patients is difficult to establish. Technology can play an important role in overcoming this challenge and creating an excellent patient experience at a low price.

Care Continuum can be enabled by technology:

Care Continuum has benefited from various technologies adopted over the last two decades. These technologies should be integrated into a systemic approach to producing high-value outcomes to make the care continuum even more effective. The following technologies would be the foundation for such a system:

  • Electronic Medical Record (EMR) 

An electronic medical record (EMR) is a method for recording, storing, and retrieving medical information electronically. It is a digital platform where patients’ current and past health status data and information are gathered, stored, and presented in a single longitudinal view accessible to patients, payers, and decision-makers.

  • Healthcare Analytics

The use of healthcare data to gain insights is known as healthcare analytics. Advanced patient care improved operational efficiency, and cures for diseases can be achieved by analyzing Big Data. The study investigates the factors affecting an individual or population’s health.

  • The adoption of cloud infrastructure

Healthcare organizations have switched from data centers to cloud storage by reducing data storage costs and enhancing data sharing across departments and other entities.

  • Healthcare devices that use the Internet of Things (IoT) are:

Connected devices are improving real-time data availability and information sharing.

  • A system that automates healthcare administration is desired.

Major administrative functions of healthcare have been automated, such as hospital billing, financial applications, and inventory management.

Various standalone technologies are available in the market to address specific problems in the care continuum, providing limited benefits. These technologies are in the form of various software or hardware available from various suppliers. An eco-system where hardware and software communicate with each other via secure communication networks, in addition to healthcare providers creating high-impact outcomes for patient communities, is what is desirable.

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Technology has enabled self-Care in the Following Ways:

  1. Patients should be engaged.

The patient is at the center of the care continuum. Patient engagement is one of the critical success factors in delivering effective care. Patients must be adequately educated about their conditions to participate in clinical decision-making and receive the most effective care, resulting in lower overall costs.

Unfortunately, some clinicians searching drug information brochures and care recommendations on Google. Is there any risk of delivering inaccurate, out-of-date, and contradictory information?

  1. Self-Monitoring

Self-Monitoring or Do-it-yourself healthcare is becoming increasingly popular to save money on healthcare costs. Healthcare is being disrupted by technology more and more. Apple’s Care Kit, an open-source software framework for building self-care apps, is an example. DIY apps like Hucu.ai enables a patient to track health conditions regularly and even collaborate with the care team to gain a more comprehensive picture of their health.

Challenges for Technology-Enabled Care Continuum 

There are certain issues and dangers associated with Care Continuum technology. The following are some of them.

  • A weak link Care Continuum is comprised of several parties, ranging from well-equipped medical facilities to local doctors’ clinics that are set in a shophouse. This chain can be as solid as its weakest link. How do we ensure data security, reliability, and accessibility across all parties? Naturally, a hacker would attack the local hospital on his 1st attempt to breach the data. 
  • Security of data: Several high-profile data breach incidents have caught the interest of healthcare professionals. Institutions respond by encrypting access to information about healthcare. What is the best way to transfer information across the care spectrum?
  • Ownership of data: Who’s ultimately the owner of your health data? The hospital? The government? Patient? Who has the right to disclose this information? This information is important for insurers, policy planners, and healthcare providers; therefore, who decides to give access to your data?
  • Credibility of data: Anyone in the healthcare continuum could record new data about patient health. How can a patient authenticate and verify the data that’s being kept? Technologies such as Blockchain definitely have the potential to solve the issues mentioned above.
  • Clinical workflows Clinician workflows are widely understood and utilized in hospitals. What is the flow to other participants within the continuum of care? Who decides the rules?
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The Care Continuum’s Onward Journey:

In the future, Care Continuum’s function will center on the efficient management of health data lifecycles – find the data, capture the data, normalize the data, aggregate the data, report the data, understand the data, and act on the data.

Let’s look at some technologies and business models that healthcare firms will increasingly adopt to harness the might of intelligent technologies and use them to deliver personalized, efficient, and informed care:

  1. Interoperable Health Plans

Patients should be able to switch health plans and keep their same doctors and hospitals. A Health Information Exchange (HIX) platform for healthcare data interoperability must be constructed. The Fast Health Interoperability Resources (FHIR) standard is currently in development. It is a draft specification for exchanging electronic health records which describes data structures and functions. The HL7 healthcare standards organization developed the standard.

  1. Mobile Health Service

The rise of mobile devices has made it possible for healthcare professionals to provide health services to a larger number of people. What is the reason we capture health information 24X7? Hospitals under acute care settings capture EMR data. Outside hospitals, information can be captured using innovative mobile devices and apps.

  1. Automated systems can manage Electronic Medical Records (EMR):

Clinicians find EMR creation difficult, according to a survey. Human assistants are therefore required to help them. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) could be used to create an EMR for clinicians as a “digital assistant.”

  1. Wearable devices can benefit from Edge Analytics:

Wearable healthcare devices are used to monitor health parameters. Edge computing can analyze data generated at the edge and provide healthcare insights and guidance. Cloud computing can be minimized, and edge computing can be enhanced by reducing the storage devices’ sophistication and miniaturization, which will not cause significant cost increases. When all three points are gathered, data generation, computing, analytics, and insight are combined in one location.

  1. The use of unstructured data in healthcare analytics is challenging.
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Unstructured data, such as audio and video recordings of patient interactions, can be utilized to gain deeper insights into healthcare delivery by analyzing them with Optical Character Recognition (OCR) engines and Natural Language Processing (NLP).

  1. Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS):

A complete technology platform integrated with vetted hardware and software will make healthcare delivery more uncomplicated and flexible for various stakeholders. Care plans for multiple chronic diseases may be offered on a single platform, and payment would be pay-per-use.

  1. Changes are being made in healthcare thanks to disruptors:

Wolters Kluwer has been investing in and delivering disruptive innovations such as voice technology and Artificial intelligence. Using machine learning, natural language processing, and clinical knowledge to perform predictive clinical surveillance may be critical to lowering costs and improving care quality.

Despite the dangers and difficulties, Care Continuum will continue to develop into a higher-value enterprise due to technology. We are at a ‘strategic inflection point where we must assemble the puzzle pieces to determine the full scope of possibilities.

Hucu.ai proudly collaborates with leading innovators in telehealth which include Zoom. Hucu.ai offers unique, accessible features in telehealth for care patients and providers, including flags for telehealth and meeting ID attachments and video telehealth sessions. We developed Hucu.ai to connect to established standards for healthcare, like APIs and HL7.

Users can use the Hucu.ai mobile application on all Apple iOS and Android devices. In addition, users can use the Hucu.ai web app from any tablet or computer using the Google Chrome browser. Access the Hucu.ai Web App on Chrome. Help with real-time problem-solving and communication, as well as sharing information. Direct communication with patients and approved family members using an app called Hucu.ai Patients Family Channel found in the Hucu.ai app.

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