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5 trends for the future of healthcare in Australia

19 August 2015

The two driving forces that are changing the face of healthcare in Australia are:

  • our steadily aging population – how do we manage the increasing demand on our systems?
  • our increasing access to technology – how can we use innovative technology to provide the best healthcare possible?

These factors are working together to shape the industry – so what can you do to put yourself in a position to confidently lead the change?

1. Greater focus on proactive healthcare

As Australians are living longer and longer, it’s no surprise that there is an increased strain on the healthcare industry. However, none of us want a longer life when it only means years of declining health and reacting to health problems as they arise.

That’s where the greater focus on proactive healthcare comes in – maintaining good health and preventing serious illness make for a more enjoyable life, while easing the strain on our healthcare systems. More and more health insurers are offering gym and fitness incentives to get their members moving, and Australian schools are constantly adding more physical education to the curriculum – all with the aim to increase health and avoid serious illness down the track.

2. Remote monitoring and healthcare

Imagine being able to easily monitor patients, even when they’re not on site for observation. Wearable technology can enable regular reporting of vitals, while the patient goes about their day.

As well as providing useful baseline data, this can enable the prevention of serious illness and injury by picking up on changes as soon as they begin to emerge. Patients also feel a greater sense of independence and security, knowing that should the worst happen while they are on their own, assistance won’t ever be too far away.

Google and DexCom are currently working on discrete and unobtrusive wearable continuous glucose monitoring systems that would notify both patient and healthcare professional when levels make a dangerous change.

Many specialists are also already using video calling technology, such as Skype, to facilitate follow up appointments with regional and rural patients – consider the potential this could have in conjunction with specialised remote monitoring technology.

3. Collaborative centres for healthcare

Allied healthcare should be able to work in a true alliance – and this is a trend that will be adopted in the coming years. Patients are set to receive the best possible healthcare as GPs, nurses, physios, optometrists, counsellors and more collaborate to provide a comprehensive and complementary health plan.

Advancements in technology allow for greater collaboration through seamless secure databases – meaning each practitioner will be able to share relevant information about the patient’s treatment while adhering to client confidentiality.

4. Greater and more useful access to patient data

If you have an established healthcare career, you’ll have already seen the impact that the increased access to and reporting of reliable patient data has already had on the healthcare industry. All signs point to this trend continuing exponentially.

As more usable data becomes available, the time spent reaching a diagnosis will decrease, leaving you with more time to effectively treat the patient.

5. Stunning technological advances

This one is a given, applicable to all industries – innovative technology is rapidly changing the way the world works. When it comes to healthcare, however, it doesn’t just mean saving time and money; it, most importantly, means saving lives.

Whether through earlier detection, more effective management, or better healthcare communication, there are new medical innovations every day. Take the opportunity to manage the creation of new technologies, or lead the industry as an early adopter in your own practice.  

Each of these future trends requires specialised management to be as effective as possible – an Online Master of Healthcare Leadership or an MBA specialisation in Health Services Management can help you prepare for the future of healthcare.

Speak to one of our Student Enrolment Advisors for more information. We’re available Monday – Friday on 1300 863 819.