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What Does Healthcare Look Like Post-Covid?

By: Jeremy Bowler

 

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Healthcare is a field that is continuously evolving, but there is no doubt that the last two years will shape the future in a different way. As technology becomes more advanced and customer preferences change, this article will explore what the future looks like post-Covid.

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Virtual consultations and telemedicine

One of the most significant developments during the pandemic was the growth in telemedicine and virtual consultations. At the height of the crisis when clinics closed and appointments were restricted to urgent sessions, millions of healthcare professionals and patients relied on virtual consultations and telephone calls to get by. During the last week of March 2020, there was a 154% increase in telehealth calls and visits in the US compared with the same week in March 2019. As the pandemic progressed, and lockdowns were introduced, numbers continued to rise.

Now that restrictions are lifting, what will happen to telemedicine? There are pros and cons. Some patients will need or prefer face-to-face contact, but many are likely to stick with calls and video appointments. For some patients, they are more convenient and less daunting and they can also save both patients and professionals time and money. By 2030, the industry is expected to be worth a staggering $460 billion. As healthcare providers adapt and new technologies and capabilities become available, expect to see more features, a better service for clients and more choice for customers.

Research and treatment development

The Covid-19 pandemic has shown just what is possible when the best researchers and scientists in the world come together with access to funds and resources to solve problems and develop treatments. Technology has long been linked to healthcare and medicine, but it has become increasingly influential.

Research forms the basis for new treatment development and it can also help healthcare professionals to identify trends and try to limit risks to prevent disease and protect vulnerable individuals and groups. Broader access to whole genome sequencing, learning lessons from Covid, collecting and analyzing more data and understanding the importance of supporting targeted research projects could lead to major developments in the future.

Adopting healthier lifestyles

The pandemic was a shock for most of the global population, and it shone a spotlight on health and wellbeing. People who are fit and healthy are less likely to experience severe illness, while those with comorbidities and risk factors are more likely to be hospitalized with Covid-19. In the aftermath of the pandemic, there could be a shift in attitudes and a collective desire to improve health.

Sales of wearable devices, such as activity trackers, soared during lockdowns and people are also using tech to keep food diaries, monitor their heart rate, assess sleep quality and work towards health and fitness goals. An increased desire to exercise and eat well could help to prevent illness in the future, reducing risks associated with conditions linked to lifestyle choices, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes.

We are still battling Covid, but there is light at the end of the tunnel and many countries are relaxing restrictions and learning to live alongside the virus. The pandemic changed the way we live and access healthcare and it will continue to impact us in the future.

Published: March 25, 2022
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Jeremy Bowler

Jeremy Bowler is a full-time copywriter of five years specialising in business and finance. Jeremy graduated from the University of Chester with degrees in business accounting and finance. He's an avid traveler and has taught English in Nepal, Malaysia, and Japan and has produced copy for Neil Patel, Entrepreneur and Metro amongst many other high-end publications.

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