The Road to Recovery: HealthTech in 2022
With the Omicron wave another set back on the road to post-pandemic recovery, it may be many months before we see the true state of what the NHS will look like, as it struggles to keep up with surging demand and reduced capacity. On top of trying to get back to capacity and tackle new cases, the NHS is facing a staff shortage across the board.
However, it’s not all bad. Tech has come on leaps and bounds over the past two years and with a huge uptick in many forms of digitalisation, such as the switch to virtual GP appointments, there’s certainly light at the end of the tunnel.
With UK tech VC investment hitting a record high of $15bn in 2020 in the face of challenging conditions and $51.3 billion funds pumped into global healthtech startups in 2021, the UK and US are driving forward the rapid growth of the global healthtech sector.
As part of the NHS’ long-term plan is to invest in new technologies that reduce pressure and offer high-quality treatment to those that need it, initiatives such as the NHSX AI in Health and Care Award will help the roll out of new tech and facilitate change and data-driven healthcare in 2022.
The next big development
With more AI research and bursaries awarded over the last few years, the sector will continue to get the backing it very much needs. With applications in positioning, healthcare, environmental monitoring and smart cities, current work on infrastructure-free indoor positioning is quickly evolving into scalable technology with broad application and tremendous potential for commercialisation.
IoT and sensor technology development has largely been focused on solving the challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. However, if the pandemic is anything to go by then the potential these technologies hold will be profound for many industries.
Indoor-location technology is also helping to streamline workflows and make teams more efficient throughout hospital buildings. Understanding data and how people use the buildings they work in opens up vast opportunities to provide better patient care through more efficient means.
Hospitals of the future
The topic around what hospitals will look like in the future has long been discussed. Smart hospitals automate tasks using technologies that are able to link or connect different assets. The benefits are huge, especially for patients, and with the uptake of technology over the last few years we might not be too far from this becoming a reality.
Smart technology is sure to become part of this future, and is being used in hospitals in the UK and across the world already. Streamlining workflows and enabling ‘right person, right place, right time to ultimately improve patient outcomes. Just as we’ve seen this year, technology will be key to helping both the public and private healthcare sectors tackle challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic head-on.
Subscribe to our Editor's weekly newsletter