#Singapore (and China) are more rapidly aging than other countries in the Asia Pacific. Here’s an interesting research paper: Singapore’s Changing Structure and the Policy Implications for Financial Security, Employment, Living Arrangements and Health Care. Because of this, remote consultation may see an uptake in Singapore in the next 5 years.
I had an interesting discussion with Omar of Khoo Teck Puat Hospital about remote patient consultation and monitoring. He noted that it will take time before remote consultation becomes an accepted practice given some elderly folks may be “anti-technology”; however, he cites that “hospitals in Singapore will not be able to accommodate all of the sick, and remote patient monitoring will improve operations and help provide patients better access to the healthcare services that they need.”
# Healthcare sector is under great constraints — obviously, that’s not something new. Dr. Nipit Piravej, Chief Corporate Officer, Bangkok Chain Hospital in Thailand said “mainstream healthcare is trapped in a traditional model.” He shares that even with technology in place such as an EMR or EHR, doesn’t necessarily translate to improved patient care. Healthcare IT must still be patient-centric. Dr. Piravej believes “EMR-EHR-PHR are surely critical tools for effective management and assistance of patients to meet the quality standards of today.”
# In Singapore, there is a big market for mobile and clinical applications that cater to the small to medium healthcare practices. However, what’s really important for the healthcare ecosystem is to close the care gap (not just in Singapore, but for any market and the global market too). IT definitely helps in better patient care. But policies must adapt; shouldn’t use “technology for technology’s sake” without weighing drawbacks. In order to close the care gap, these things should take place: standardize data to enable sharing, integrate analytics across the continuum, and most importantly allow patient to participate in care.
The presentations from the Healthcare IT Innovation Summit 2012 will be available in a couple of days are already available. If you’d like to get a copy and hear about those presentations, just leave me a comment. We’re working to host a Philippine eHealth conference sometime in July and if you’re interested to support or participate, again, please leave me a comment.
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