The switch to paperless offices has really driven the use of technology in many industries, including healthcare. Not just hospitals but different areas such as physical therapy, nursing homes, etc. are making the switch to digital note taking. There are a couple reasons why this is a a step forward for healthcare and all of its underlying sections. Just a few reasons include research advancement, time efficiency, and monetary savings.
Most healthcare professionals are swamped with patients everyday. The healthcare professional to patient ratio is terribly skewed, causing doctors, nurses, physical therapists and other professionals to see more patients per day than they used to. When attending to this many people everyday, it can be very easy to lose track of individual patient symptoms and begin to lose organization in necessary paperwork. Healthcare professionals are required to keep extremely detailed record of each patient, which can add up to a lot of paperwork. Why let all of these important files just sit in a cabinet? Why not use these real life cases as a resource for researchers? This is what Big Data is doing. The technology that harnesses big data and relays it into understandable connections is what is allowing researchers to tap into the vast amount of real life cases that could be the key to a new cure or better treatment plan.
In order for researchers to quickly access patient files, the records must be digitized. Instead of healthcare professionals taking patient notes and then having to type them into a computer program, why not start with the computer? More and more doctors offices and physical therapy clinics are using tables or laptops to type notes while talking with patients about their symptoms. This may seem a little less personal, but it helps healthcare professionals use their time wisely. Due to their packed case loads, they do not have time after each patient session to sit down and type up their notes. This multitasking is allowing doctors and physical therapists to be much more efficient with their time and potentially get to spend more time actually working with each patient.
By switching to digitized files and multitasking, healthcare fields are saving a ton of money. Offices are no longer wasting mass amounts of paper and dealing with where to store all of their records, they now simply need to ensure they have enough hardware space to store their patient records. Healthcare offices are also making more money by being able to see more patients in a day due to the healthcare professionals multitasking and using their time efficiently. Big Data is making great strides in the healthcare industry and continues to help the field find new solutions and better their practice.