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Telehealth has redefined healthcare in more ways than one, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. From democratizing access to healthcare to widening insurance coverage, telehealth has caused a ripple effect across the healthcare spectrum for the better. However, the road doesn't end here. The emergence of recent technologies are expected to further reshape the healthcare industry in the near future.

Here's a list of the top 5 game-changing technologies that will transform healthcare in 2021:

1. Ambient Intelligence:

Ambient intelligence is an electronic environment that can sense and respond to the presence of people. Healthcare spaces such as Intensive Care Units (ICUs) and clinics are hard to monitor, given systemic complexities such as shortage of bedside nurses and the pandemic situation in general. Ambient intelligence can help execute complex medical actions in volume and reduce the stress on healthcare workers when the caseloads are high. It can also significantly improve healthcare by enabling efficient clinical workflows and patient safety. Ambient intelligence can be used to help senior citizens and people with chronic illnesses stay independent.

2. Bioprinting:

According to CBInsights, bioprinting refers to the creation of living biological tissue and organs through the layering of living cells and supportive biomolecules. It is considered to be a viable solution for the existing organ transplant crisis in the US. Bioprinting can enable human organ creation on demand basis for replacing organs that will not be rejected by the body's immune system. Similarly, drugs could be developed by testing on such engineered organs rather than on animals, which has long raised ethical concerns in the medical community.

3. Cookie-busting ads:

The elimination of third-party cookies that is about to be implemented will likely lead to the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to identify context and target ads based on content. Since third-party cookies allowed tracking of browser history and user behaviour, the healthcare industry witnessed massive,unauthorized data collection and sale of personally identifying information(PII) and protected health information (PHI). AI algorithms that can make recommendations by analysing media, on the other hand, can ensure that the privacy of individual healthcare data is not compromised.

4. Differential privacy:

This refers to privacy solutions that can mask data, making it anonymous for analysis and sharing. This technology can be a particularly beneficial solution for teletherapy where patients part with sensitive information about their mental health. It could help therapists ensure strict HIPAA compliance in their teletherapy practice as well.

5. Space-based research and development:

Did you know that the outer space provides unique conditions for research and development? The low gravity condition in space speeds the aging process and causes proteins to crystallize evenly, which can boost drug discovery and development and accelerate research in regenerative medicine. Since low gravity also opens up new possibilities in manufacturing, the exploitation of Earth's resources can be reduced. In short, space-based research and development can bring in major breakthroughs in healthcare and life sciences.

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Post by Bhairavi KS
December 9, 2021


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