The rapid infrastructural advancements being laid in the healthcare industry will lead to a drastic shift in healthcare employment in the country as technology becomes increasingly prominent in all levels of the field. Specifically, data analytics, data security, and other information technology positions will increase in demand as hospitals begin to implement telemedicine into present structures. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook, the healthcare industry is expected to grow 18 percent from 2016 to 2026, more than any other industry in the country. A notable portion of these jobs will require computer literacy and data analysis skills as care continues to be delivered increasingly through telemedicine avenues.
According to HealthCare Weekly, the telemedicine industry is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.2 percent and exceed $130 billion by 2025, up from $26.5 billion in 2018. By 2018, it’s estimated that 65 percent of interactions with healthcare facilities will occur through mobile devices. According to a 2015 research2guidance report, 80 percent of doctors already use smartphones and medical apps in their practice. Other trends include hospitals and insurance companies storing medical records in the cloud so that patients can access their test results online at any time.
In Philadelphia, telemedicine initiatives have already begun to reshape the region’s healthcare landscape with programs including Penn Medicine’s Center for Connected Care, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Dermatology Program, Temple Hospital’s Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Program, and Jefferson Hospital’s JeffConnect. These programs are bringing new innovative technologies and opportunities to the city and bridging the gap between those with and those without access to healthcare in the city whether it be due to distance, time, or economic disparity. Below is a map of the health centers in Philadelphia. From looking at the map, it is evident that there are areas in the city such as Kensington, Haddington, and Frankford that are underserved and in need of more healthcare service facilities. One way in which telemedicine is able to better serve these areas is by accessing these areas remotely through devices such as mobile phones, sensors that track real time data, and schools with access to remote physicians.
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