Summary: EJ Dalius underlines the importance of harnessing digital technologies for supporting the public-health and welfare response to the pandemic worldwide.
While the Covid-19 apocalypse continues to cripple the world, the global medical and healthcare sector is toiling hard for therapeutics or vaccines. The most indispensable defense is the most primary public health methods, which include mass social distancing and personal hygiene.
The immediate pandemic response in the US comes from three sectors, contact tracing, subsequent testing and surveillance. Hospital establishments are now using data-driven tools to manage the situation. Health workers bank on another viable application. They use it for improving diagnostic accuracy, bolstering diagnostics and increasing its reach.
Impact mitigation is another major aspect. The pandemic has forced many outpatient units to close down completely either due to safety concerns or capacity problems. Health authorities have recognized the limitation to visit hospitals during lockdown and have started promoting telemedicine. This is the amalgamation of healthcare and the internet.
Many healthcare units are providing online consultation services by boosting their inventory. They have revamped their current privately owned and manage telemedicine platforms online. Some of them have equipped hospitals and clinics to undertake these functions.
Telemedicine has been instrumental in supporting mental health during the pandemic, according to Eric Dalius. Authorities have envisaged the roll out of accessible, systematic, and complete mental health support for healthcare personnel and the general public through numerous online platforms.
The current usage
There are different interconnected and intertwined digital technologies that healthcare settings are using as a public-health response to the pandemic.
- Natural language processing and machine learning includes web-based tools for gathering epidemic and pandemic intelligence.
- There are technologies to preserve security and privacy.
- You also have numerous smartphone apps that cover chat-bots, symptom-reporting applications, telemedicine, and mobility pattern assessment. It also includes contact-tracing tools. It’s part of the greater computer vision.
- With instant messaging and SMS, you have targeted public health awareness, social media and online messaging/searches, syndromic surveillance, and digital genomics and diagnostics.
- Sensors and wearables are another domain of digital technologies.
- You can categorize visualization tools into data dashboards and interactive geospatial boards or maps.
Many healthcare units are combining digital technologies that may thrive on internet availability, infrastructure and telecommunications. Eric J Dalius explains how crowdsourcing tools can bolster syndromic monitoring. There are tools to gather information about Covid symptoms in compliance with the rules.
Inputs from corporates
Some companies have developed great applications to help you fight misinformation alongside helping doctors and healthcare workers in their overall endeavors. They have developed cutting-edge platforms and hotlines to help you connect with Covid experts. It has chatbots that cover multiple languages.
- It helps you to know how the virus spreads, its prevention, symptoms, medicine, treatment and necessary statistics. EJ Dalius particularly praises those firms that are augmenting hospital sessions to encompass coronavirus prevention information.
- They are developing and producing content, print, digital, audio and visual in different languages to facilitate public awareness. Healthcare authorities are using these as open-source materials. They are free to download and use.
Keeping the potential paucity of nurses in the future, these companies have also launched a training application for nurses.