Technology has been revolutionising the healthcare industry, with the UAE and GCC having made significant investments in digital health to improve services and outcomes. Here are some examples of how technology is transforming healthcare:
Reducing hospitalisation rates
The Singapore government’s Chronic Disease Management Program (CDMP) is a prime example of how technology can improve patient outcomes and reduce associated costs. The program, which uses digital tools to monitor and manage chronic conditions such as diabetes and hypertension, has resulted in a 10 per cent reduction in hospitalisation rates and 15 per cent in healthcare costs.
Virtual care platforms
The UK’s National Health Service (NHS) has invested heavily in virtual care platforms, which allow patients to receive care from their own homes. It has enabled remote monitoring of patients, reducing the need for hospital visits and freeing up resources for more critical cases. The success of virtual care platforms has been reflected in the increased patient satisfaction rates and significant cost savings for the NHS.
Genomics is another area where technology is transforming healthcare. Companies such as Color Genomics, Invitae, and CRISPR are leading the way in developing new treatments and personalised medicine. In the Netherlands, a genomics-based approach to healthcare resulted in a significant reduction in costs, with a 50 per cent decrease in the use of intensive care units and a 50 per cent decrease in hospitalisation rates.
Lives – and dollars - saved
Technology in healthcare has several benefits for the GCC. For instance, if the UAE can reduce its hospitalisation rate by just 1 per cent, it could save approximately $50 million annually. Similarly, a 10 per cent reduction in hospitalisation rates in the GCC could lead to savings of $6 billion annually.
Technology can also improve patient outcomes by enabling early detection of diseases and providing personalised treatment options. This, in turn, can reduce the need for costly interventions. The insurance sector can also benefit from this shift towards technology, as it can reduce healthcare costs and lead to more efficient use of resources.
The implementation of technology can increase access to care, particularly for patients who may need to travel abroad for treatment. By embracing digital health, the GCC can become the hub for medical tourism, attracting patients who seek affordable, high-quality care.