25 Jan Eight MedTech themes and trends for 2022
Healthcare systems worldwide have struggled under immense pressures from the pandemic. Treating an influx of Covid-19 cases combined with maintaining the health of an ageing population has placed a strain on the systems we rely on to keep us healthy and live longer.
This pressure has spurred on the creation of new innovative technologies to support healthcare services. How can these technologies help in 2022? Below we outline eight emerging MedTech themes and trends for this year:
1. New technologically advanced care pathways to take over traditional care pathways
2021 was a turbulent year for healthcare with a backlog of patients waiting for treatments. This has put the effectiveness of traditional care pathways under the microscope suggesting we need quicker, easier, and more cost-effective ways to treat patients. We are continuing to see medical technology become integrated into care pathways, and this will develop further in 2022.
2.Increased adoption of wearable MedTech devices in the home setting
Wearable MedTech devices like the geko™ device offer new effective treatment options which can be administered independently by patients at home. This means less time and resources are required from medical professionals, more hospital beds will become available and, subsequently, costs to healthcare systems will be reduced.
3.Increased focus on patient-centric care
Patient centred care ensures patients’ choices are built into new care pathways. MedTech is driving patient-centric healthcare by adding more value to the development of treatment plans, making them more personal and flexible.
4.MedTech and hospital collaborations will flourish
MedTech and hospital partnerships help fuel progress by lowering treatment costs, improving patient outcomes, and reducing the pressure on healthcare professionals. Organisations, such as the Innovation Agency (part of the AHSN Network), work to help extend the reach of medical devices into healthcare systems more effectively. The Innovation Agency’s goal is to spread innovations that improve health and reduce costs, and it is important for these collaborations to continue with hospitals to ensure patients and healthcare professionals experience the benefits of MedTech.
5. A switch to virtual care
The pandemic accelerated the need for digital care with face-to-face interactions discouraged. In July 2021 the use of telehealth was 38 times higher than pre-pandemic levels, a report from McKinsey shows. The value of virtual care lies in its convenience for both patients and those treating them, making healthcare advice and treatment more accessible while saving the system time and money.
6.AI will help to develop a more personalised standard of care
AI-based clinical support can help healthcare professionals deliver more accurate diagnoses and treatment plans for patients. AI has a range of applications in healthcare which we predict will be used more widely to help medical professionals better understand their patient’s needs.
7.Closer collaboration between supply chains to enhance the adoption of MedTech
A deeper focus on open communication right across the supply chain can help MedTech companies navigate clinical applications and regulatory hurdles more effectively. In turn, multiplying the adoption of devices into healthcare.
8.Enhanced focus on sustainability for MedTech
Following the healthcare initiatives promised through the COP26 Health Programme, sustainability is a key focus for MedTech manufacturers and will continue to be beyond 2022. Significant changes need to be made to achieve the net zero carbon emissions pledge, and these will begin to surface this year.
The benefits of MedTech to healthcare systems are unmatched. They offer both patients and healthcare systems fast and cost-effective solutions that traditional care pathways simply cannot compete with, and we are looking forward to seeing how MedTech transforms healthcare further in 2022.