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Sector insights for 2018: Healthcare

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The fast-changing healthcare sector is set to see further evolution and upheaval in 2018, so staff will need to be prepared for action to ensure care quality standards are consistently upheld. Most healthcare professionals would agree that the sector has been experiencing challenging circumstances in the last few years, with the inherent pressure that comes with this line of work exacerbated by broader political and economic factors beyond their control. Evolving government policy, funding constraints and emerging public health issues have all led to significant upheaval within the medical field, and the opening months of 2018 have offered plenty of evidence to suggest that this rapid pace of change is likely to continue throughout this year and beyond. As such, it's never been more important for healthcare workers and managers to stay abreast of the latest trends and developments within their industry, and to make sure they are doing everything they can to acquire the skills they need to adapt. Even against a backdrop of ongoing change, the need to ensure that care quality remains paramount is still constant, and that will be as true in 2018 as it has ever been.


Building the case for actionable ethics in digital health research supported by artificial intelligence

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The digital revolution is disrupting the ways in which health research is conducted, and subsequently, changing healthcare. Direct-to-consumer wellness products and mobile apps, pervasive sensor technologies and access to social network data offer exciting opportunities for researchers to passively observe and/or track patients'in the wild' and 24/7. The volume of granular personal health data gathered using these technologies is unprecedented, and is increasingly leveraged to inform personalized health promotion and disease treatment interventions. The use of artificial intelligence in the health sector is also increasing. Although rich with potential, the digital health ecosystem presents new ethical challenges for those making decisions about the selection, testing, implementation and evaluation of technologies for use in healthcare.


How Can We Save The Private Healthcare System In America?

International Business Times

Our system has created a private healthcare industry in the United States that is larger than that of any other country in the world. America is an anomaly in many ways – and healthcare is one of its most pronounced examples. Even as we struggle almost endlessly to fix what a majority of Americans believe is a broken system, the populace is almost evenly divided on why it's broken. Those on the left often argue it's because the government isn't doing enough, while those from a more conservative bent lobby for more reliance on the private sector to fix the problem. The real rub here is that both trains of thought are wrong – or at least fail to understand the complexity of the problem. That's because the truth of the matter is that our system in America is steeped in a collaboration of both the private and public sector, and so any real fix must be rooted in that symbiotic relationship as well. First, here are some surprising facts. Our system has created a private healthcare industry in the United States that is larger than that of any other country in the world. Healthcare spending makes up 18% of our GDP compared to a global average of about 10%. Not surprisingly, the healthcare sector is the US's largest employer. The US also has the greatest healthcare spending, sitting at $10,224 per capita. A collaborative system such as ours is tremendously dependent on the ethical commitment of all the players involved, like every other system in a capitalistic society. This being a business publication, we will leave the ethics of government and how to improve or protect it to better and more knowledgeable public policy experts.


The polio survivor who became a healthcare boss

BBC News

This week we spoke to Romana Abdin, chief executive of private healthcare provider Simplyhealth. Romana Abdin was just three when she contracted polio, but she says "she was one of the lucky ones". She had to wear leg callipers for several years, and now at 54 she still walks with a profound limp. But Ms Abdin says it could have been much worse: "Lives have been lost through polio." In fact, she says that contracting the disease may have helped her, as it gave her a different outlook on life and health.


Dr AI will see you now: setting a path for healthcare's artificial intelligence revolution

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Is there any sector more ripe for Artificial Intelligence (AI) transformation than healthcare? Over the past decade, we've seen health systems around the world experience significant strain due to increasing population numbers and age. There is a clear need to maximise efficiency, lighten the burden of stretched human resources and harness the medical sector's mountains of data. It comes as no surprise that global spending on healthcare AI is expected to reach anywhere from $644 million to $126 billion by 2025. Of course, the overriding focus should not be what monetary value is brought to the market, but how AI can improve human lives.