25 September 2017
Looking Back at HealthTech Predictions in 2012: How Accurate Were They?
In Healthcare.Digital Julie Pelta, VP of Business Development at DataArt’s Healthcare and Life Sciences Practice, UK, compares the 2012 healthcare tech predictions to the present state of healthcare technology.
“In 1903 Henry Ford’s lawyer was told by the President of the Michigan savings bank not to invest in the Ford Motor company, saying that “the horse is here to stay, but the automobile is a novelty, a fad”. History is littered with now comically wrong predictions. This is particularly true in the World of technology. From Western Unions prediction that the telephone had too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication” to Darryl Zanuck’s 1964 prediction that TV would last six months because people would get tired of staring at a box every night.
The article predicts that AI will ‘assist with diagnostics and decision support for both patients and clinicians’. This prediction largely proved to be correct, as diagnostics is the area in which AI has made huge advancements in the field of healthcare. Examples of this include DataArt’s professional assistant for developed for Kehmesoft and IBM’s Watson computer in use in New York. Both systems utilise an increasingly common methodology of comparing symptoms to a huge database of previous cases to provide a potential diagnosis.
One area the article was completely correct on was the way in which we will communicate with doctors, postulating telehealth as the future. This has received the ultimate endorsement by the recent introduction of GP at hand by the NHS. This service offers patients the chance to see a free NHS GP within two hours via a phone video chat. In the private healthcare space similar concepts are flourishing, particularly push doctor and Now Health Care group and i-GP. What perhaps was not predicted by the article was that telehealth would increase in a number of healthcare fields from counselling to speech therapy. Examples include DotCom therapy, which is completely revolutionising speech therapy, providing access to people in remote areas would otherwise have to travel for hours to access such services.”