Creating healthier futures for ill children

Digital health trends to watch in 2020

The very traditional healthcare sector is being disrupted! Many innovative and fascinating approaches are making their way into healthcare as you are reading this post. Since Triumf Health team was formed late 2016, and we have been active health technology community members ever since, we have some ideas to share and make the TOP 3 predictions of our own for 2020. Keep reading to know more!

The rise of digital therapeutics (DTx)

We’ve already seen the beginning of this trend with various startups in the field, like Akili Interactive and Click Therapeutics, raising significant capital, highlighting the potential of DTx. Still in its eary phase, digital therapeutics will certainly change the landscape of healthcare. Think outside the box of receiving treatment through the traditional visit to a doctor, requiring physical presence (also for followups). Emerging research from different perspectives suggests that treatment outcomes are the very similar when digitally delivered treatment is compared to the traditional face-to-face therapy. However, please note that we are looking at it mainly from the psychological perspective. And it does not end with just delivering the treatment digitally - we at Triumf Health have shown that it is even possible to play your therapy! Triumf Health offers a personalised approach to improve treatment outcomes and empower ill children to live healthier lives by delivering digital therapeutics through a mobile game.

Interconnectedness in healthcare

One of the major issues in the healthcare industry is related to the fragmentation of data. As various important health-related data are stored in separate channels (sometimes not even digitally) that do not allow seamless data transfer, a closed ecosystem for safe data integration is needed. At this point, even appointments via an app are part of a single hospital system and there is not enough automatic communication between care centers. For that reason, data often gets stuck, making diagnosing and treatment in a different location a huge issue.

The challenge is further augmented by the nomadic lifestyle that millenials are increasingly adpoting. Young generations consider themselves as global citizens instead of living in one county, or even in one city, which means getting treated by one GP for most of their lives is in the past. That highlights the need of moving away from paper trail health records for good to a traceable and safe health records ecosystem - although it might sound futuristic, it's value is crucial and the implementation is about to happen globally. This kind of interconnectedness in the healthcare systems has gathered momentum for a while already in Estonia. You might know that Estonia is known globally for truly being a digital nation and one integral part of this digital society is also safe e-health records that can be tracked. The patient portal could be linked with third-party applications as well. That’s future, isn’t it? But the future is already here in Estonia and hopefully will be implemented elsewhere as well in the near future, allowing the next prediction to become reality.

Changes in care delivery: personalized medicine

Personalized medicine is often looked at from the biology standpoint, especially focusing on the omics. Multi-omics approach allows researchers to combine genomics, epigenomics, metabolomics, and other methodology to understand the flow of information that underlies disease. However, we believe that behavioral data is equally important because the way we act also influences our disease risk. That’s why behavior change has received so much attention over the past years and will probably continue being in the center of attention. And this brings me to the last prediction: personalized medicine that is achieved through omnichannel health care delivery.

Most of the adolescents and adults are using so many apps, fitness trackers and are part of various customer programs that all are a source of information in addition to medical data. This can all be utilized with the help of artificial intelligence for better public health. It is especially valuable because in order for any behavioral change to happen in this day and age, where everyone is so busy, society is changing rapidly and people often find themselves in the information overload, integrated multichannel healthcare delivery saves costs, makes healthcare delivery a seamless and nice experience for patients and makes it possible to adjust treatment accordingly. Essentially it creates an integrated customer experience in the healthcare sector that has been very traditional otherwise.

2020: the future is here

To sum up, the healthcare industry is certainly being disrupted in 2020, starting from integrating novel methodology for diagnosing diseases to digitally delivered treatments. At the same time, working towards a safe ecosystem of interconnected innovations allows an omnichannel healthcare delivery that will make personalized medicine possible once and for all, no matter where you are.

Author

Dr. Kadri Haljas

Author

Dr. Kadri Haljas

Being an expert in the mental burden of chronic disease, Kadri is the idea generator and Triumf team leader. She has a background in clinical psychology and research.