In the medtech market, there is often talk about the challenges of providing care in developing or under-developed nations. These areas tend to benefit from technologies that make it easier for providers to see patients and to implement care in areas that may not have the resources for daily management.
But often it can be hard to forget that there are citizens in the most developed countries that may be unable to access regular healthcare due to location.
Just as it’s crucial to strategize products for hospital use, it’s just as important to think about how care is delivered outside of a hospital, and what is needed to make sure that individual residents aren’t forgotten. From the United States to China, rural areas and the populations that live there need medical care, and medtech is the sector that can help them receive it.
There are significantly fewer healthcare providers in rural areas as opposed to urban ones, which can be a huge barrier to making sure entire populations receive care. One of the ways this has been addressed in the past is by having providers “visit” rural offices for a day or two, allowing locals to come to discuss health concerns. But that kind of schedule never tends to work for anyone involved, which is why telemedicine has become crucial in growing medical care in all parts of the country.
Telehealth allows providers to stay at their location yet meet with many more patients than in-person appointments would allow. As opposed to leaving disease management to patients themselves, wearable technologies and other devices allow providers to monitor progress from anywhere. If a patient isn’t following up on their care, providers can step in much earlier, helping to cut down on the number of visits to the ER.