While healthcare IT that supports telehealth and remote monitoring are gaining ground, other technology is hardly emerging from the pilot stage in addition to competing for a slice of the budget .
One of the top consumers of the HIT budget is the EHR which, in spite of having a reputation for poor user-friendliness is still the default choice for health systems aiming to encourage patient engagement.
Where healthcare CIOs are likely to face friction is in a trade-off between traditional EHR systems, with relative ease of deployment and integration and new digital health technologies with superior design advanced analytical capabilities.
health initiatives will deliver low ROIs until they gain enterprise-wide
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AI will progress
but struggle bridging adoption gaps
Health systems have become wary of vendors’ inflated promises on the reach of rooted in “black box” algorithms while Chief Analytics Officers across the industry find themselves under industry stakeholder pressure to “move beyond the math” and show benefits from AI and advanced analytics.
Still, as machine learning and natural language processing algorithms steadily improve and the choice of technology analytics solutions for healthcare grow, the prospects for AI in 2019 look good.
Big tech players
are still figuring out their places in healthcare markets
Technology companies continue to compete for ‘ownership’ of the healthcare consumer of the future. While the big tech players have covered new ground in aggregating and analysing big data, they fail to provide the ‘last-mile solutions’ that could convert insights into real-time care and direct engagement with healthcare consumers.
On the other hand, Apple has made impressive progress with its turning of the Apple watch into an ECG app and integration of smartphone apps with EHR systems.
HIT start-ups will continue to struggle
Digital health start-ups will need to find a way out of the risky pilot zone into enterprise adoption. In 2018, several promising start-ups shut down as they struggled to gain a foothold with end clients in the market and to protect against being quashed by big tech companies.
A light at the end of the tunnel is the interest healthcare enterprise is taking and the establishment of innovation funds to provide a platform for new solutions.
Blockchain will battle to find its place
While there is a general interest in Blockchain across the HIT community (that has heard of it), it’s still regarded as a lightweight in terms of its deployment potential compared to other technologies like AI for example. One of the reasons for its meagre progress in healthcare to date is it needs a massive number of participants for any kind of programme leverage.
That being said, Blockchain is not going to disappear any time soon as its supporters continue pushing o raise awareness of its potential to decentralise and make more transparent the use of patient data, for example.
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