Technology has been making a clear and direct impact on the in-home health care industry. It allows seniors and disabled adults to be at home more often, even when contending with serious health issues. That’s because it allows these men and women the opportunity to connect to medical professionals through apps and other devices, helping doctors to stay updated on their vital stats, medications, and other factors.
According to some analysis, though, this technological benefit may come at a price. It may simplify life for those dependent on home care, but some of the apps and other programs are complicated to use, thus requiring more work hours on the part of medical professionals and their support staff. This could lead to burnout among doctors and other professionals that could, long-term, negatively impact the home health care sector.
As noted by US News in a commentary blog, Closing the Health Care Connection Gap written by Shikha Jain:
“The implementation of the electronic medical record was meant to streamline the process and make everyone’s jobs easier but, unfortunately, in many cases the opposite is true. A 2016 study in the Annals of Internal Medicine notes that physicians spend one to two hours on EMRs and other deskwork for every hour that is spent with the patient, plus another one to two hours daily of personal time on EMR-related activities. A recent study led by researchers at Yale University, showed many health care professionals give the EMR an “F” rating for usability and that the transition to the EMR may also be contributing to high rates of physician burnout.”
It’s no secret or surprise that technology is driving many aspects of the home care industry, mostly due to its cost saving opportunities. It also provides a growing aging population in the country greater options to stay home as opposed to facility care settings. But, if the platforms are not improved and simplified for those medical professionals who use them, it could be a double-edged sword.
It’s also creating less personalized care and connection between doctors and patients. It was also noted in the article:
“However, as healthcare moves towards an increased computerized way of taking care of patients, what is at the core of the doctor-patient relationship—connection—is lost.”
While the home care industry as a whole looks forward and develops new ways of providing improved and increased care options for seniors and disabled adults, technology is often going to be the centerpiece of this all. Yet, as has been discovered in the past, impersonal care may not always be the best option.
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