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The Need for Digital Transformation in Healthcare

Perhaps this goes without saying, but the industry most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftereffects—and most in need of digital transformation—is healthcare and its supply chain. This conversation will beseech a greater discussion on how the backlogs are creating a shortage of healthcare professionals and products depending on the regions impacted.

A look at the government numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 ACS (American Community Survey) shows there were 22 million workers in the healthcare industry, which is one of the largest and fastest-growing sectors in the United States and accounts for 14% of all U.S. workers—and it is expected to surge in the years ahead.

The U.S. BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) says employment in healthcare occupations is projected to grow 16% from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations, adding about 2.6 million new jobs. This projected growth is mainly due to an aging population, leading to greater demand for healthcare services.

While we need more workers, we also need more digital transformation. The IoT in healthcare market is expected to grow a whopping 21% between 2020 and 2025, according to MarketsandMarkets. This is due to the rising focus on active patient engagement and patient-centric care, growing need for adoption of cost-control measures in the healthcare sector, and growth of high-speed network technologies for IoT connectivity, and increasing focus on patient-centric service delivery through various channels.

Obviously, the IoT is also needed to help meet the rising demand for services to protect against the COVID-19 virus, which extends to the entire healthcare ecosystem including pharmaceutical companies, drug makers, vaccine developers, health insurers, and hospitals. Applications, such as telemedicine, remote patient monitoring, and interactive medicine, along with inpatient monitoring are expected to gain traction during this time.

Mordor Intelligence also forecasts the market will grow, pointing specifically to the adoption of healthcare information systems, the emergence of big data in healthcare, improved device accuracy and connectivity, and increasing penetration of connected devices. The demand for big data analytics integrates the most recent innovation in machine learning, logical methodologies, computational intelligence, and data mining. Many of the healthcare experts, including payers and providers, are now analyzing big data to obtain detailed knowledge.

Looking a bit further out, Fortune Business Insights suggests the market will grow 25.9% through 2028. Factors such as the growing awareness regarding self-health monitoring and the evolving healthcare infrastructure are expected to boost the demand for the technology worldwide. The analyst forecasts the hospitals segment will dominate the market due to the increasing investments by hospitals in the adoption of IoT-based technology.

Naturally, with an industry like healthcare we are going to see an uptick in technology adoption. We have to. Without it, the entire healthcare ecosystem won’t be able to serve the surge of patients needing care.

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