Internal Medicine Evolving with Digitalization with Treatment of Chronic Disease
The digitalization will lead to evolving roles of most of the specializations, including Internal Medicine. Some specialties, like Cardiology and Radiology, will be affected more than others. Those fields are very technology-oriented, and, therefore will feel a bigger impact. The cardiologist and radiologist work with data and procedures all day long. The Family Practitioner and Internist not so much, although, like every other speciality, they, of course, are affected by benefits of Internal Medicine in communication and education, and by some devices, like the Vscan, iStat, and others devices that almost every physician can use in a basic patient work-up.
Remote Monitoring of Patient’s Glucose Hypertension on Horizon
In addition, the Internist and General Practioner work with chronically-ill patients, a segment of the healthfield which is deeply affected in a great way, by digitalization; developments in remote monitoring of such huge health diseases such as Hypertension and Diabetes will aid the practice of Internists and Family Practioners in a big way. No longer with the physician have to sit down with a patient once every three months or so, and do a spot check on the blood pressure or the serum glucose. Instead, there will be a remote wireless record in the Patient’s Electronic Health Record of almost contnuous readings of the blood pressure or glucose over the past 3 months! And the sensors are getting smaller and smaller!
Now, HOW good is that for the doctor to more efficiently, and effectively plan that patients health care?
But, of course, specialties are not immune to structure of payment by change in healthcare made by governments. For example, in the United States, as part of the Affordable Act of Barack Obama, everyone will have health insurance. That creates a large group of the population that can see physcians, and the physicians and hospitals can be re-inbursed. Therefore, the will be an increased demand for primary physicians in the USA to fill this need, and Internists and Family Practitioners will be needed even more than today.
The new patient of the Internet Age will come armed to the doctor encounter will lots of information, data from internet searches.
It is the evolving role of the Internist to personalize and individualize this data for the welfare of the patient.