The world changed after coronavirus shutdown. Countries had imposed city-wide lockdown and social distancing became the norm. This changes the way we live. In the education sector, many schools are adopting online platforms. In entertainment, sports and concerts around the world have been halted. Casinos and other establishments have also been closed down while players are shifting to internet casinos to gratify their gambling needs. See the new normal in online casinos.
The medical area is the most affected. As many places begin to reopen, the impacts of coronavirus are still felt. The Healthcare industry is marching toward the new era. Here’s a look at the new normal in the Healthcare sector.
Canceled doctor appointments
Many experts and doctors encourage everyone to postpone routine and non-urgent appointments. Doing this will not only minimize your risk of coronavirus exposure, but it also helps lower your odds of spreading it should you unknowingly be carrying the virus.
In the US, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC recommended that the “healthcare system prioritize urgent visits and delay elective care to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in health care settings.”
In the UK, the National Health Service (NHS) also encourages people to take the online route or phone their doctor for medical advice instead of going in person to the hospital. They added that people can only visit the hospital when the doctor asked them to do due to serious concern.
Telehealth or telemedicine
Before the coronavirus hit many nations, not all people are aware of the telehealth. But this platform isn’t a discovery. This type of platform is used in many countries for years already.
Telehealth uses new technology to connect patients with real doctors via videoconferencing technology, mobile devices, and the internet. This platform allows for more touchpoints outside of the doctor’s office or the hospital.
In a survey made by Research and Guidance, they revealed that 65% of healthcare experts expect that the telehealth solutions and services will benefit from the COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, 74% of participants of the survey expect telehealth to become the norm. The survey was conducted between March 24 and April 8, 2020. The sample size included 513 company representatives from Europe (49%), North America (26%), Asia (8%), and the rest of the world (17%).
The said research also unveiled that the leading telehealth providers such as Teladoc, AmWell, and Push Doctor had receive higher visit numbers compared last year during the pandemic.
In the US, the country expands the use of telemedicine under Medicare, the federal program for people 65 and older. The telehealth services received a $500 million boost from Medicare spending so that elderly patients can avoid going to emergency facilities.
New healthcare policy
Many congresses around the world proposed a bill on the healthcare area. Many of those proposed-bills seek to help and reward the health workers.
In the Philippines, a lawmaker seeks to grant a ₱100,000 (or more than USD 2000) compensation for both public and private health workers. It also pushes for a ₱1 million ( or more than USD 20,017)assistance for the families and loved ones of health workers who may succumb to COVID-19.
Many countries also offer Free COVID-19 testing while other countries even handle the cost of full treatment for the said disease.
In the US, congress had passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) which is requiring all private insurers, Medicare, Medicare Advantage, and Medicaid to cover Covid-19 testing and eliminate all cost-sharing (copayments, deductibles, and coinsurance payments) associated with testing services during the public health emergency. The country also, passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, a $2.2 trillion pandemic-relief bill, requires all private plans to cover Covid-19 testing and future vaccines.
Chatbots are a software application that mimics written or spoken human speech to interact with a real person. This technology is usually used for customer service of one company. But during the pandemic, many organizations developed Chatbots mainly to address people’s inquiries about the virus.
Because of the accessibility, chatbots are one of the technologies that became very popular during the pandemic. Other chatbots are made for mental health.