Technology can Empower Your Family’s Chief Medical Officer
Technology has been a core player in helping improve healthcare, saving time and effort for both patients and caregivers alike, and reducing potential errors
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Meet Sushmita Sharma, who is banking professional in Gurgaon. She has an 11-year-old son who has juvenile diabetes. Her daily routine revolves around administering the insulin to her son, preparing the right diet for him and ensuring that he is coping well with diabetes.
Meet Neha Verma, housewife and a mother of two. Her husband Nikhil Verma (45) and Neha were caught off guard when Nikhil was diagnosed with diabetes. Her life changed completely and now she lives in constant worry about how diabetes can be managed for her husband. She has started doing her bit by talking to friends and family and working with her husband to alter his lifestyle. She is now constantly tracking the medication, doctor visits, diet, and exercise to ensure that he is healthy.
Meet Swati Singh, she is the only daughter of her parents and both of them are diabetic. Her parents live in Kolkata while she works in Mumbai. She is constantly on the move and yet wonders how she can effectively monitor and manage her parent’s condition.
What connects these three women? The fact that they are the Chief Medical Officers for the family. All of them feel immensely responsible to monitor and manage their families’ healthcare. The story resonates with people suffering from diabetes and other chronic illnesses.
However, with the recent advances in technology, each CMO can be effectively enabled to manage diseases in a simpler and more efficient manner.
It comes as no surprise that as our lifestyle changes into a more sedentary one, diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, asthma, obesity are becoming more common. But over the centuries, one fact that has not changed is that it is the woman of the family who often ends up as the primary caregiver in the house. Hence it is imperative that these caregivers or “Chief Medical Officers” learn how to navigate the technological resources available to them. In fact, caregivers often experience sleep disruption, overwhelming worry and loss of personal space, leading to decreased energy, and changes in mood. Therefore, while we need to empower the patient, we also need to empower the CMO.
Empowered with technology
With new and advancing technologies, many caregivers can monitor the patient without having to be at home all day. This allows more patients to live independently and in their own home for a longer period. In addition to searching for information on medical problems, treatments and drugs, many go online to read about the personal experiences others have had with certain health conditions — as a way to understand more about their loved one’s health or even a condition they’re dealing with themselves.
Smartphones have simplified lives for so many of us, and now it is also being used as a tool to monitor chronic ailments. From meal planning apps to activity trackers, smartphone apps are a great for staying healthy and active, and they are no less than a pocket sized health centre. But here’s how they can help women, the CMOs of the family look after their loved ones better:
Promote peace of mind: For CMOs living with the persistent fear that something can go wrong, life can be super stressful. From medication management apps to cloud-based health information tracking systems, technology can provide a critical safety net — not just for preventing accidents and oversights, but also for setting caregiver minds at ease.
Better medication management: Caregivers are looking for technology that can help with medication refills, delivery and adherence. Smartphone apps have organizational tools that allow caregivers to set reminders for giving medications or even to alert them when a patient has forgotten to take a prescription.
Track health: Smartphone apps and cloud-based health information tracking systems can help patients and their family caregivers keep information such as medical history, physician contacts, medication schedules, and health conditions organized and handy, helping them make the most informed treatment decisions.
Health in your hands
Indians downloaded over 6 billion apps in 2016, up from 3.5 billion in 2015. This proves that the mobile penetration in the country is growing at a good pace and thus mobile phones apps make participation possible for caregivers to access the healthcare tools they need to provide high quality health services to their loved ones.
Technology has been a core player in helping improve healthcare, by reducing costs, improving patient safety and satisfaction, saving time and effort for both patients and caregivers alike, and reducing potential errors.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house
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