Digital health can do a lot, but we have to decide what matters most
During the COVID-19 pandemic, digital health in the U.S. experienced fast-tracked adoption. Telemedicine consultations became popular; healthcare professionals benefited from seamless access to data that supports faster and better decision-making; patients embraced mobile health apps that helped them stay healthy in their homes.
Investments in digital health innovations in the U.S. paid off tenfold in the first weeks of the coronavirus crisis alone.
This acceleration was key to addressing urgent issues like the continuity of care disrupted by the measures to curb the spread of COVID-19. Against all odds, it remains just as urgent today. "The health system is undergoing a transformation. While the adoption of digital innovations can be easy, their full integration and adoption within the healthcare system is tricky," says Dr. Komolafe.
The innovations we struggled to implement before the pandemic are becoming an everyday reality. Now is the time to reflect on their role and answer some strategic questions:
- How can they contribute to improving access to care and the quality of medical services?
- How do we use them to decrease the cost of care and make healthcare more sustainable?
- How can all the innovations get integrated into the health systems to get the most out of them?