Digital health is the use of information technology to monitor a patient’s health. It can reduce medication errors and save money for hospitals. It also allows health organizations and clinics to make better use of staff. Many of these systems also help track costs of healthcare and reduce the number of visits. In addition, these systems can help prevent disease and keep patients healthy.
The integration of digital health tools into the healthcare industry is becoming more commonplace. The booming direct-to-consumer healthcare market is driving more patients and healthcare professionals to use digital health. Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic is creating a greater need for healthcare professionals to be more digitally-literate. Regardless of age or education level, healthcare professionals need to know how to use and discuss digital health solutions.
Companies and investors are making significant investments in digital health solutions. Several of these technologies are being developed to treat chronic diseases. These tools will provide patients with tools to monitor and manage these conditions. However, the technologies aren’t clinically validated yet. Until now, many of these technologies have only been able to be used in a laboratory setting.
The FDA is making strides to speed up the certification process for digital health products. It recently introduced a pre-certification program for developers. This is intended to streamline the certification process for low-risk products, while also providing developers with an opportunity to demonstrate quality and organizational excellence. Some companies, including Apple, Samsung, and Verily, have already joined the program.
Digital health is a rapidly developing industry. While digital technology is a key enabler of the industry, it is not the end goal. It is comprised of a variety of technologies that leverage data, insights, and actions to improve health and healthcare systems. These technologies also improve the lives and work of healthcare professionals.
Digital health innovations offer a unique opportunity for innovators to address the problems of health inequity. By considering health inequity from different perspectives, digital health innovators can develop products that can improve health equity and improve the quality of care for patients. This will increase the efficiency of healthcare systems and benefit the economy.
Although digital health technologies can improve the quality of care, there are privacy concerns associated with them. It is important to understand the privacy policies of each company that collects health data. The Federal Trade Commission and the Office of Civil Rights have developed tools to help consumers protect their information. However, the FDA has not yet regulated the use of digital health products.
Digital health companies can improve their credibility by engaging with patients. For example, the Tigerlily Foundation in Stone Ridge, Virginia, offers support and education to patients through a series of outreach initiatives. It offers preventive care alerts, yoga classes, and other services. By working with patients, companies and researchers can develop products with sensitivity and relevance to their communities.