The 21st century has brought amazing gains and innovations. We telecommute across time zones, play in virtual worlds, and finish the day’s shopping with a few clicks online. But our changing times have also created changing problems in our healthcare systems. More and more people require ongoing, long-term medical attention. According to the 2010 World Health Organization global status report on noncommunicable diseases, rapid urbanization and 21st century lifestyles have contributed to growing rates of chronic diseases: cancer, heart disease and diabetes. The WHO predicts that total deaths from diabetes will rise by over 50% in the next 10 years. These chronic diseases require long-term treatment, much of it at home. At the same time, inpatient care numbers have dropped as advances in medical treatment procedures have allowed patients to spend less time recovering in hospitals. “Medical care is meeting patients where they are.” Human populations are aging. According to one industry report, the number of people over age 65 will increase to 10% of the world population by 2017. These older populations require more comprehensive geriatric care, including chronic disease treatment and rehabilitation. Medical care is moving out of hospitals and meeting patients where they are. Healthcare providers must keep up with these shifts. “These days, the role of the healthcare provider is not just reactive.” It’s all about thinking ahead: In addition to treating chronic diseases, the medical establishment has placed an increased focus on preventative medicine to arrest or slow the onset of these modern ailments. We may not be able to slow the processes of urbanization or aging just yet, but we can target other lifestyle factors, such as exercise and diet. These days, the role of the healthcare provider is not just reactive, but also proactive, educating and communicating with patients about healthy lifestyle choices.
Digital solutions for these modern healthcare issues have seen fantastic success in the organizations that adopt them and hold amazing potential for organizations on the verge of making the shift. For instance, Samsung healthcare solutions are enabling organizations to deal with the increased cost of healthcare for aging populations by offering efficient digital innovations that save time and money while increasing the quality of care. With these digital solutions, remote care can be personalized to each patient in a way that it couldn’t before.
These kinds of innovations don’t come without challenges, of course. Naturally, as personal information becomes digitized, privacy concerns rise to the forefront. Samsung takes these concerns seriously, adding built-in security measures that comply with local standards.
Samsung’s offerings for healthcare organizations are based on extensive research and deep empathy for the issues facing both providers and patients.
Diabetes is a disease that requires constant attention to a variety of health factors, making it one of the most difficult diseases to manage consistently. Patients must take their daily health needs into their own hands, checking blood sugar levels and monitoring their diet. It can get complicated, to say the least. In order to make things easier, Samsung has partnered with Welldoc to provide BlueStar, the first FDA-approved mobile prescription software for adults with type 2 diabetes. Using the GALAXY Note 4, diabetes patients input their health information: blood sugar readings, exercise, diet and medications. The app tracks the patient’s health, sending reminders, warnings and encouraging messages throughout the day. “Treatment is personalized to each patient.” Real-time coaching is also available through the app. Treatment is personalized to each patient, as it starts with an individualized initial set-up meeting with a healthcare provider. Patients can also set up a SMARTVisit with their providers, who receive a detailed patient data analysis to make more accurate, evidence-based decisions. The mobile platform makes it easy for patients to consistently input their data, increasing the quality of their care. Additionally, the remote communication allows healthcare organizations to save on transportation and manpower costs, allowing them to reach more patients, more frequently.
Cardiac arrest is serious, and often fatal. Patients often fail to recognize the symptoms, and even when they do, are reluctant to call emergency services. “Reasons range from confusion to denial to fear of looking silly if they aren't having a health crisis after all,” Melinda Beck writes in the Wall Street Journal. Heart disease is also preventable, with lifestyle management and careful attention paid to heart health. “Physicians can provide more personalized feedback and services.” The FDA-cleared, wireless BodyGuardian System is a healthcare solution that uses Samsung technology to monitor vital signs like heart rate and EKG rhythms. The monitoring can be done under the supervision of a healthcare provider at a rehab center, or on an on-going basis while the patient goes about his or her day. The BodyGuardian System is small, wireless and equipped with Bluetooth, making it comfortable and unobtrusive, and pairs seamlessly with Samsung tablets like the GALAXY Tab S 8.4. Patient data is sent to physicians, who can watch for warning signs of cardiac arrest and be ready to respond. Given the patient’s response to physical activity and exercise as shown through the BodyGuardian System, physicians can provide more personalized feedback and services. This personalization, along with fast and efficient monitoring, increases the quality of care and elevates the brand value of the healthcare organization.
It’s become a mantra amongst healthcare providers: diet and exercise are key components of a healthy lifestyle. Now, it’s easier than ever to encourage patients to stick to their goals and get healthier. Using the S Health app on the Samsung GALAXY S6, users can track their fitness and biometric information, like body weight, blood sugar, and blood pressure. With more detailed information available right on their phones, patients can see first-hand the effects of lifestyle changes. For a hands-free solution, they can slip on the Samsung GALAXY Gear S, measure their steps with the pedometer function, and send this data via the S Cloud server to their physician, who can stay up-to-date with the patient’s progress.
The healthcare industry is an industry of heroes, made up of individuals and organizations that exist for the purpose of fighting disease, healing injuries and helping others. The challenges of healthcare in the 21st century are formidable, but Samsung is dedicated to working with you to find solutions. Mobile technologies are helping people live longer, healthier and happier—it’s an exciting time to be alive.
Come find out more and get a free guided tour of Samsung’s solutions at CeBIT 2015.