Medical technology is increasingly defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as “the application of scientific and technological information in the service of health and medical care”. What this means to the practicing medical professional is that there is a growing need for them to adopt a more interactive and dynamic approach to their practice. It is in this context that healthcare engineering comes into play. This growing discipline seeks to create medical technologies that can meet the demands of modern medical practices. The field is also interested in creating a community of practitioners and technologists that can share ideas and develop new and better ways of doing things within the medical community.
The first step in this direction is to build a network of medical technologies. This can be done through the establishment of medical partnerships or alliances where each participating organization brings resources of a specific discipline to form a core network of medical technologies. Such collaborations provide a forum for research and testing activities as well as a venue for sharing best practices and leading practices within the discipline. Such collaborations also allow practitioners to share ideas on how to best use existing medical technologies in a manner that enhances patient care. Such sharing provides a venue through which medical professionals can improve their knowledge of current technologies and also build new relationships with other professionals. Such relationships can prove to be mutually beneficial and can help in the expansion of knowledge about medical technologies and the development of clinical guidelines and rules of the medical world.
Another important area of medical technologies is in the arena of digital health. Digital health includes all the modalities that are associated with the electronic storage, data flow, billing, and payment of healthcare services. Examples of such modalities include echocardiography, computerized tomography (CT) scanning, electronic patient medical record (EPR) software, biometric authentication, digital imaging computed radiography (CDR) software and genetic analysis systems. The goals associated with digital health are to enhance the level of service delivery, reduce costs, increase access to care and to reduce adverse impacts on the environment. Digital health can be defined as a collective vision that encompasses the entire healthcare landscape and which provides patients and providers with improved services and increased opportunities for enhanced treatment.
Precision medicine is a discipline that is rapidly becoming an industry of its own, according to Harmony Medical. Precision medicine deals specifically with issues that affect individuals such as heart disease, eye diseases and chronic conditions. In the past, medical technology has focused primarily on diagnosing these conditions and managing existing ones. As a result, accuracy has not been maximized and treatments have often been underwhelming. Increasingly, precision medicine is being viewed as a way of improving healthcare services and outcomes for individual patients, as well as for the wider community.
Similarly, in the area of precision medicine, medical technologies are helping to design and produce artificial organs for transplantation purposes. These technologies have enabled scientists to develop artificial hearts and lung kidneys that are more functional than ever before and which are capable of healing on their own. These organs can help patients recover from injury or disease more quickly, improving the quality of their lives while potentially increasing their longevity. Additionally, some artificial organs may even help patients avoid death due to disease.
In general, the employment statistics of medical technology industry participants continue to climb, as technology graduates continue to seek employment in this field. In addition to the many positions currently available, medtechs are also needed to design and manufacture new equipment, implement healthcare systems and train residents. As a result, medtechs will likely continue to experience job growth in many areas for many years to come. As the demand for skilled medical technicians increases, the supply will likely follow.