Federal IT budgets are expected to exceed $4.8 billion in 2019, and the amount of money spent on IT is predicted to outpace other industries [1][2]. But which software and tech trends are dominating the medical field? Here are three that you need to know about.

1. Patient Scheduling Software

Patient scheduling tools optimize patient management. This software makes it easier for hospitals and medical facilities to arrange appointments and communicate with patients. Unlike other types of software, patient information is centralized in one place, providing users with quick access to valuable data. The best new software automates patient scheduling, sends appointment reminders to patients via SMS or email and optimizes record keeping and billing. Some of the most popular patient scheduling tools include NueMD, ECLIPSE and WebPT.

There are various benefits of patient scheduling software. Medical practitioners reduce no-shows, save money and improve the level of service they provide to patients. Unlike manual patient scheduling, everything is automated.

Patients can also book appointments online -- a growing trend in the medical sector. Seventeen percent of patients scheduled a doctor's appointment online or through a mobile app in the last year, while a further 42 percent said they would schedule an appointment online if they had the opportunity to do so [3]. Moreover, 66 percent of US health systems will provide online self-scheduling by the end of 2019 [4].

2. Smartwatches That Detect Heart Attacks

Around 610,000 people die of heart disease in the United States every single year, making it the leading cause of death for both men and women [5]. Tech developers are trying to solve this problem with new products like diagnostic chips and portable devices. There's even a smartwatch that prevents heart-related conditions: iBeat features tiny micro sensors that monitor a user's heart rate for symptoms of a heart attack or cardiac arrest [6].

With these sensors, iBeat constantly monitors heart rate and notifies users -- and 911 -- in the event of an emergency. It's water-resistant, comes with a touchscreen interface and has built-in GPS for location tracking. The product was designed to save lives and could change cardiovascular disease prevention forever.

It's not just iBeat, either. Apple Watch offers a heart rate monitor and could predict heart attacks before they occur [7].

3. Marketing Automation Software

Marketing automation software is a medical administrator's best friend. These tools automate everyday processes -- think data integration, patient monitoring, patient outreach, and so on -- for more effective healthcare management. Marketing automation software gathers data from various sources and combines it all in one place. This lets medical professionals send targeted communications to patients -- something that could reduce patient churn significantly.

Marketing automation also provides healthcare professionals with real-time analytics about patients. Medical administrators can use this information to make important decisions and solve problems quickly. Forty-nine percent of businesses already use marketing automation tools [8], but expect more hospitals and healthcare facilities to adopt this software in the future.

Patient scheduling software, smartwatches that detect heart disease and marketing automation tools are just three software and tech trends that are changing the medical profession. These tools improve patient communication, optimize healthcare management processes and could even save lives.

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Avi Savar is CEO and Managing Partner of Dreamit, a top venture accelerator and early stage investment fund. He is the author of Content to Commerce and consults globally on trends in digital media, disruptive technologies and corporate innovation. He has been featured on Fox News, Forbes, Mashable, Business Insider, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, the New York Times and is a contributing editor for Inc.

Dreamit Health is currently accepting applications for fall 2017.

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Sources:

[1] https://www.nuemd.com/news/2016/11/14/global-spending-reach-3-5-trillion-2017-healthcare-rises-with

[2] https://www.enterpriseinnovation.net/article/healthcare-it-spending-forecast-outpace-other-industries-1727170764

[3] https://smallbiztrends.com/2015/10/online-appointment-scheduling.html

[4] http://www.fathomdelivers.com/blog/healthcare/are-these-2015-healthcare-marketing-statistics-guiding-your-digital-strategy/

[5] www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/facts.htm

[6] https://www.ibeat.com/

[7] https://www.cultofmac.com/322011/how-apple-watch-could-one-day-predict-heart-attacks/

[8] http://www.cmo.com/features/articles/2017/2/16/15-mind-blowing-stats-about-marketing-automation.html#gs.Mwo7rOs

Published on: Aug 1, 2017