Technology innovation is essential in healthcare today, and it’s arguably needed more in Asia than anywhere else. We’re currently living in what is being called the Asian Century, a time when Asia continues to represent the majority of the world’s population and continues to grow. With around four billion people, the healthcare challenges in Asia are far greater than anything we see in the West. Wrapping technology around these challenges is essential.
That’s what makes events like the Healthcare Innovation Solution Day Series so valuable. This series of one-day regional conferences brings together organizations like Microsoft and healthcare IT stakeholders to talk about health innovation and strategies. This fall, Microsoft participated in Healthcare Innovation Solution Day events in Taipei, Hong Kong, New Delhi, Jakarta, Bangkok, Manila, and Kuala Lumpur. Each conference was filled with discussion about amazing new innovations that will transform healthcare in Asia in the years to come.
Here are the three key trends that were a key focus at all the conferences:
- It’s All About the Cloud
The rapid rise of cloud computing platforms such as Microsoft Azure continues for many healthcare organizations. It’s easy to see why: it’s often been too expensive for healthcare providers to acquire new technology. This is particularly true in many emerging markets, where organizations are challenged to find affordable solutions. By moving to the cloud, providers can move from an economic model where they’re spending a lot upfront to a much more cost-effective and flexible consumption-based model where they get to pay for what they need rather than what might be.
- Mobility Is On the Rise
Like many other industries, healthcare is seeing the value of using mobile solutions. At the conferences, I heard a lot of excitement around mobility, and about how using pen and paper at the front line of patient care is coming under fire from providers who want to do things differently. For a growing number of healthcare organizations, touch-based technologies like Microsoft Surface are quickly changing the dynamic to one of speed and efficiency.
- Providers Want More from Their Data
It’s becoming more and more important for healthcare organizations to derive insights from their data in more intelligent ways. The needs are going to be different depending on whether an organization is in a developed or developing economy, but the goals are very much the same: using data analytics and business intelligence technologies like Microsoft Power BI to make better business decisions.
Getting from where we are today to where we need to be will demand a strong focus and commitment from governments to drive technology investment from the right places. But as I saw at the regional conferences in Asia, there is some real technology innovation momentum going on right now in healthcare, and a great cast of passionate people and participants who believe in the change that can be mustered. I can’t wait for next year’s conferences to discover how much bigger that momentum has grown.