Technology’s Growing Importance in Providing Quality Health Care

Whenever you sign up for a new group health care benefit plan for your company or receive communications from your insurance carrier about new benefits, there’s a good chance the insurer is using technology to provide you with better service. Insurers previously used technology to manage only the claims process and settle payments with providers. Today, technology can do so much more. Here are just a few ways insurers and the health care industry are using technology to save members money while improving the level of health care:

Artificial Intelligence
According to research advisory firm ABI Research, artificial intelligence (AI) applications will save the global health care sector an estimated $52 billion by 2021. AI refers to software-driven systems that analyze data to make decisions and take actions.

Virtual Medicine
Individuals who have access to telemedicine can talk to a health care provider by phone or through a personal computer any time of day or night to discuss minor health issues such as a cold, flu, allergy or sprained ankle. This is particularly helpful to those who live in rural communities and who have limited access to health care providers. AI-enabled tools also allow providers to monitor their patients at home or in the clinic.

Second Opinions
Clinicians can use algorithms to accurately review data sets to screen for pathologies. For instance, a study presented at the European Respiratory Society International Congress found that AI can be an invaluable aid to help pulmonologists interpret respiratory symptoms accurately and make a correct diagnosis.

Predictive Analytics
AI can combine data from a variety of sources, such as a patient’s genetic test and their electronic health record to provide timely alerts and suggestions to a care team. As the technology develops and becomes more widespread, AI could help diagnose strokes, eye disease, heart d disease, skin cancer and other conditions.

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