How Innovation in Healthcare Sector has Improved Patient Outcomes

Advancement in medical technology has increased life expectancy in India by more than 10 years, during the past 2 decades! The role of medical devices in the healthcare realm is indispensable, and constant evolution in this sector has led to upgradation of minimally invasive surgical procedures and treatments. Some of the key developments in medical technologies include vaccines which effectively create a defense mechanism preparedness, to medical equipment which ease the burden of almost any chronic conditions. High standards of living and technological advances in medicine have led to a sharp increase in life expectancy at birth – from 57.9 years in 1990 to 68.3 years in 2017. As a result, people with increased lifespans pose greater demands on healthcare service. Additionally, the proportion of the aged population is increasing, creating a genuine pressure for quality healthcare. It is expected that the population above 65 years will increase from 5 percent of the population in 2005 to 15 percent in 2030.

Considering this, incessant innovation in medical technology is essential to enhance the quality and effectiveness of care. Therefore, billions of patients worldwide depend on medical technology at home and at hospitals. With the convergence of many scientific and technological breakthroughs in the past decade, the pace of medical invention has accelerated, resulting in better clinical outcomes. Over the years, the treatment and prevention of heart diseases with the help of medical devices can be cited as a good example. In recent times, I’ve seen significant improvement in the move from obtrusive and expensive systems, to upgraded work process to deal with and treat coronary illness. A mix of new advancements in picture guided strategies and high-accuracy imaging innovation has furnished clinicians with expanded certainty – to convey excellent patient results, empowering speedier recuperations, enhanced patient care, and of course in decreased medicinal services costs.

To begin with, coronary interventions also called coronary angioplasties have emerged in a big way. Today, these procedures conducted here are at par with the standards of the developed economies. These procedures need coronary stents, and advancement of stents has progressed from basic ‘bare metal stent’ to the now widely used ‘drug-eluting stents’ (DES). Over the past 20-25 years, DES has evolved and got finer in terms of their basic structure, polymer coating, and drug use. With innovation impacting the design, delivery & procedure approaches, new generation stents come up at an interval of every 2-3 years. The research-based medical device companies use innovative designs by putting the patient at the core of product design, to make them better suited for customized uses, for both short-term and long-term outcomes. This is in-turn is giving way to more accurate treatments of multiple complexities and challenges which were suboptimal earlier.

Technology has the potential to improve the quality of patients’ life. There have been major advances in electronics and battery technology and material science that have enabled researchers to produce devices for heart failure and other disorders, that are more effective, cheaper and more customizable, than ever before. As per the Global Burden of Disease, 2016 data, Ischemic heart disease was the leading cause of death in India with an increase of 53 percent from 2005. If the current trend continues – by the year 2020, the burden of IHD in India will surpass other countries. However, there is solid hope that progression in medical devices will surely help in curbing the disease burden, in the country. Similarly, optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an emerging technology for performing high-resolution cross-sectional imaging. OCT technology offers enrichment of understanding, monitoring progression and response to various treatment modalities employed in chorioretinal diseases. As such, these developments have transformed ophthalmic practice over the past decade. Efficient extensions of OCT technology have enabled non-invasive, depth-resolved functional assessment and imaging of tissues in other areas including interventional cardiology. – Business World

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