Ten Trends Blog #1

Ten Trends for 2023: Emerging Technology and Cybersecurity

January 25, 2023
January 25, 2023

HealthStream recently published its annual white paper on the top ten trends healthcare leaders can expect in the coming year. The paper was authored by Robin Rose, MHA, Thought Leadership Consultant. This blog will focus on the second two of the ten trends identified in the paper. Future blogs will cover the remaining trends.

Technology: Picking Up Priorities from 2019

In 2019, healthcare leaders were focused on implementing new technology that would improve the safety, quality and efficiency of healthcare. In early 2020, as it became clear that COVID-19 had reached pandemic levels, it also became obvious that those leaders would need to pivot and focus on the crisis. As cases began to decrease in 2022, leaders once again turned their attention to emerging technologies.

Top technology priorities for healthcare are:

  • Telehealth – the use of telehealth increased during the pandemic as in-person visits became less desirable and insurers began reimbursing providers for virtual visits. Now, hospitals, health systems and other patient care organizations will focus on building robust telehealth solutions.
  • Wearables – devices such as Fitbits and smartwatches can collect and track data on the wearer’s health and physical activity. As their popularity has increased, insurers and companies recognize the employee and consumer benefits that come with awareness of physical activity and healthier lifestyles
  • Artificial Intelligence - AI has the potential to help healthcare organizations recognize substantial bottom line growth. In a recent article, Healthcare Weekly noted numerous opportunities for AI’s usage, such as robot-assisted surgery, virtual nursing assistants, administrative automation, fraud detection, dosage error reduction, connected devices, clinical trial participant identification, preliminary diagnosis and automated image diagnosis.
  • Big data – Healthcare data will increasingly be used to inform health prevention, intervention strategies and disease management. Advancements in analytics tools and processes have made it easier for healthcare professionals to analyze and use the massive amount of information gathered to make better informed clinical and business decisions.
  • Cloud technology will be used to enhance patient care, quicken research, and streamline internal operations.  Although the use of cloud technology in healthcare is still developing, cloud-based patient data enables physicians and other healthcare providers to collaborate during diagnosis and treatment.

Cybersecurity: Threats Will Continue to Increase

Cybersecurity will remain a serious concern for healthcare leaders as 2022 is on track to be a record-breaking year for the number of breaches. The HIPAA Journal reports that in 2021, an average of 1.95 healthcare breaches exposing 500 or more records were reported each day – nearly double from 2018.

Employee education, enhanced regulations, and encryption have reduced the number of breaches caused by loss or theft.  However, recent reports indicate that hacking and unapproved access continue to be frequent causes of breaches.

HealthStream explores the shifts and trends on the horizon that may impact your organization in our Annual Ten Trends Series.