Vaccines are starting to roll out in many parts of the world and some believe the beginning of the end of the pandemic is in sight. Optimism is always welcome, but it’s important to acknowledge the challenges aren’t all behind us.
Neither are the solutions to those challenges.
Innovative and exciting medtech solutions emerged over the past year in attempts to address our pandemic-induced problems head on, particularly in the field of medical technology. Which of these technologies offer advantages that go beyond the inconveniences of social distancing, and provide permanent value once relative normality has returned?
While increased awareness of patient safety has made major strides in the last decade, COVID-19 has thrown the issue into the spotlight. It was 2016 when BMJ published a report citing medical errors as the third leading cause of death in the United States behind heart disease and cancer. The medical community took a brief moment to pause and reflect on how a certain proportion of human loss, through human error, is something we as a society have traditionally accepted. Now, we’re reflecting on patient safety again.
Social distancing, viral prevention, sanitation, and refined approaches to ICU patients all came to the fore during the height of the pandemic. Malnourishment among ICU patients, for instance, was a much more obscure concern before the pandemic. But with a rising number of patients requiring ICU support alongside more studies highlighting the dangers of malnourishment, medtech providers have developed unique methods to circumvent these dangers.
Medical communities have even cultivated awareness campaigns to streamline the issue, with projects like the Patient Safety Movement, which aims to raise public awareness, expand clinical support, and create a wider sense of urgency surrounding the issue. The movement works to create and freely share actionable solutions (Actionable Patient Safety Solutions) to help mitigate potential dangers.
Publications such as the British Medical Journal had already red-flagged it as a serious concern long before the pandemic entered the frame. As such, the issue is unlikely to peter out once we’ve arrived at a point of greater normality….