It seems like every day new technologies are emerging in every field, and the medical field is no exception. Perhaps one of the most exciting uses of these new technologies are wireless health devices that allow physicians to monitor patients’ conditions from anywhere and at anytime. Wireless pacemakers can be monitored by physicians and adjusted remotely if necessary. Home “telehealth” – doctor/patient video conferencing, wireless monitors that deliver info by cell phone or over the internet – these are becoming increasingly important to routine patient care, especially for those with chronic conditions.
Another new technology that’s getting a lot of use in the medical field are the “smart phone” health applications. Cell phones such as the iPhone and phones that run the Google Android system have the capability to allow doctors and patients mobile access to medical records, instant messaging and video connections, and more.
The main problem seems to be reimbursement – these technologies are so new that a reimbursement process for them has not really been established. Many doctors and patients who are using these are finding them worth the initial cost, especially since it seems that they save money in the long run. But of course others are afraid to adopt technologies, and there may be a steep learning curve for some. But these technologies are not going away and will probably become more and more common, and more and more important, to our daily lives and our health.