The field of medicine is undergoing a revolution. There’s an explosion of new discoveries in genomics and biotechnology, plus a resurgence of interest in preventative care. These changes are going to impact everything from how doctors practice medicine to how we stay healthy. So if you’ve ever wondered why your healthcare costs keep going up or whata percentage of Americans actually have health insurance—and what’s happening with all those uninsured people—this post will help you understand where the health care industry is headed.
The Significance of Curing a Disease
A “cure” is simply the disappearance of a disease or condition. This might mean that a person no longer has symptoms, or it could mean they are no longer at risk for an adverse outcome.
For example, we have different names for different types of cancer: prostate cancer, breast cancer and ovarian cancer are all cancers with very different origins and causes. But what they have in common is that they all require treatment once detected—in some cases this means surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy; other times it just involves lifestyle changes (like eating less red meat).
Curing any type of disease would be considered a medical breakthrough—and curing more than one at once would be even more impressive!
Geneticists and Computer Scientists Are Going to Team Up
Geneticists and computer scientists are teaming up to find solutions.
They’re going to be able to analyze huge amounts of data and pool intelligence with other scientists, which will enable them to process more information than ever before. Geneticists are also learning how computers can manipulate DNA, which is a game-changer for us all. It means that we can use this technology not only in our bodies but also in our environment. This will help us create a healthy society and planet—and it all starts with an understanding of the human genome!
A Revolution in Cancer Care
Cancer is a disease of the genome.
This statement could not be more true than it is today, when we have a firm grasp on how cancer arises and progresses at a molecular level. Cancer cells are abnormal by virtue of their DNA having acquired mutations that drive them toward growth, survival, and metastatic spread. In short: Cancer cells are different from normal cells in how they grow, how much energy they use, how quickly they divide (or not), and even what types of tissues they can form in various organs.
Doctors Are Going to Become Niche Specialists
The field of medicine is becoming more specialized and this trend will only continue. Health care professionals will be able to focus on their area of expertise, leading to better treatment and care for patients.
Doctors are already going extinct – in the future, they will be replaced by a series of specialists who can provide more accurate diagnoses and treatments based on their specific areas of expertise. There’s nothing wrong with this; it’ll lead to better doctor-patient relationships because there are fewer doctors out there than ever before (and those that remain are extremely busy).
- Dermatologists – treat skin conditions like eczema or acne
- Gastroenterologists – treat diseases related to the digestive system (e.g., Celiac disease)
Personalized Medicine Is Going to Become Standard Practice
Personalized medicine is an exciting new way of treating patients that uses genetic testing to determine the best treatment for a patient. It’s a way to treat disease, not just symptoms. As personalized medicine becomes more common and accepted in the future, it will be used more often than traditional medicine because it’s more effective and cost-effective, as well as more convenient.
Health Care Will Be Delivered at Home
Healthcare will be delivered at home. This is an obvious one, but it’s important to note that this trend has already started to take off. The average hospital stay costs around $10,000 per day—and that’s before you add on additional costs like medication and therapy. As more people opt for home healthcare instead of going to the hospital, we can expect overall healthcare costs to drop dramatically. This will make life easier for patients who no longer need to travel long distances or wait in long lines at large hospitals; it will also free up doctors and nurses so they can focus their efforts elsewhere on the medical front line.
Telemedicine Will Become the Norm
Telemedicine, the use of video to provide medical care, is already being used to treat many conditions. As it becomes more common and accessible, telemedicine will be used by more people in more places.
Although telemedicine isn’t yet mainstream for most health issues, it can already be beneficial for certain conditions such as:
- Blood pressure management
- Diabetes management
- Depression screening/treatment (e.g., through chatbots)
Studies Will Be Crowdsourced and Citizen-Led
Crowdsourced studies are becoming more and more common, with the potential to improve research efficiency and effectiveness.
Citizen-led research will also be a key element of the coming health revolution. As it becomes easier for individuals to participate in research, we can expect this type of work to become increasingly popular, especially among groups that were previously excluded from traditional medical studies because of financial, legal or cultural reasons.
New Ways to Track Our Well-Being and Test Drugs Will Emerge
There will be new technologies developed to help us monitor our health.
Even though the Internet of Things (IoT) is still in its infancy, it’s already enabling a new wave of technology that can track our well-being in ways not possible before. For example, consider the Fitbit Ionic smartwatch, which tracks biometric data like heart rate and blood oxygen levels using optical sensors embedded in its wristband. The Apple Watch does something similar with an electrocardiogram (ECG) sensor housed inside the device’s band. And some medical professionals have even begun prescribing wearables for patients with chronic conditions like diabetes and hypertension—allowing them to remotely monitor their health from afar via smartphone apps or web portals.
As wearable tech becomes ever more ubiquitous, it’ll become easier for all of us to keep tabs on our wellness through these devices’ highly accurate tracking capabilities—and this trend will only continue as more products hit the market over time. In turn, this should make it easier than ever before for researchers at pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer Inc., Merck & Co., Novartis International AG NVS -1%, GlaxoSmithKline PLC GSK +0%/GSK +0% -3%/GSK +0% -3%, Eli Lilly LLY -1%, Johnson & Johnson JNJ +2%/JNJ +2% -4%.
There’s a New Focus on Preventing Disease Instead of Reacting to It
Preventing disease is better than treating it. It’s cheaper, more sustainable and more effective in the long run. But what if we could prevent disease not just by preventing the bad things from happening to us, but also by taking positive steps to ensure that our bodies are working at their optimal levels?
A paradigm shift is underway that is changing how we think about health and wellness. In this new era of wellbeing, prevention will trump cure as the key to health.
Precise Diagnostics and Smart Medical Devices Will Emerge
When you go to the doctor, the first thing they do is a physical exam. They look at your health symptoms and ask questions about how you feel. Then they may order tests or send you to specialized doctors for more information. This process of gathering data is known as diagnostics, which often involves expensive equipment that can take hours or days to get results back—and then more time to interpret them in order to make a diagnosis and treatment plan for an illness or injury.
A revolution in diagnostic technology is underway that will eventually change health care forever: smart medical devices paired with cloud-based data analysis systems (which are called artificial intelligence [AI]). These smart machines can analyze medical images such as CT scans and MRI scans more quickly than human radiologists ever could—more than five times faster! And because AI uses machine learning algorithms instead of human intuition alone, it’s less likely than humans to make errors detecting disease features on scans like tumors or blood clots that could lead someone else down the wrong path if they were left untreated until their next visit with their primary doctor—or worse yet lead doctors astray when making critical decisions about whether or not surgery might be necessary due simply because they didn’t recognize something was wrong before it became too late.”
Genomics Will Become More Powerful, Cheaper, and Mainstream
If a health revolution is coming, then genomics is the hammer that will smash it into place. The field has already made great strides: researchers have identified genetic variants associated with disease risk and drug response, but there’s still much to discover.
For example, one major goal of genomics is to use people’s genetic data to predict which drugs are most likely to work for them—and which might cause adverse side effects or even be ineffective altogether. This information could help doctors prescribe treatments that are tailored specifically for each individual patient based on their unique characteristics and medical history (or lack thereof).
Healthcare Technology Is Becoming More Efficient at Managing Patients’ Care
With the rise of telemedicine and artificial intelligence, healthcare technology will continue to improve at managing patients’ care. These technologies are becoming more efficient at managing patients’ care, which means that more people will be able to receive high-quality medical treatment without having to go through the stress of traditional in-person visits.
Our ability to cure diseases is drastically improving, which will change many aspects of healthcare.
- Your healthcare will become more personalized.
- You’re going to be able to get the care you need with greater ease and at a lower cost—the combination of better treatments and cheaper costs means that many more people can access healthcare.
- Diagnoses will be made faster, which means treatment can begin sooner (and if it’s not urgent or life-threatening, it may not even require treatment).
- Many of the most common illnesses have already been cured or are in their final stages of being eradicated thanks to new breakthroughs in medicine.
As you can see, there are many ways in which our healthcare system could change. If you’re interested in learning more about the future of medicine and what it means for your health, be sure to check out the rest of our blog posts!