When the COVID 19 was declared a pandemic, we all knew which sector will be handling the majority of the stress. The healthcare sector has been managing patients, testing, types of equipment and all the other things that are required to deal with the pandemic. However, the situation also highlights the difficulties that people have to go through if they are employed in this sector.
People in all the countries have exhibited their appreciation and gratitude towards people who are battling the virus upfront. From lab technicians to doctors, every person dealing with the situation, it deserves gratitude. But at this time, it is also crucial for us to discuss the impact of the novel coronavirus in modifying our current healthcare premises. This would also aid in exploring what the future of healthcare looks like once the disease is controlled.
One thing that all the experts are sure of is that this is certainly not the last pandemic. Considering the ever-evolving microorganisms, pandemics may also occur more frequently than they used to. This is precisely the reason why we need some alterations in the healthcare sector to ensure our preparedness for the coming crisis. Here are some ways in which we can do so:
Undertaking Digital Initiatives
India has already proven itself in this field. With the introduction of the Aarogya Setu app, a majority of the population was able to register their status and are continuing to do so for further prevention. This step can help significantly for other contagious diseases as well. Moreover, such apps can also be generated for local regions where local disease outbreaks can be registered, and as such, their broadening impact can be curtailed. The provisions of updating the health status on such applications may also help in notifying the availability of healthcare facilities to people who need them next.
More Importance To Healthcare
To understand this aspect, let us take an example. Germany has recorded low death rate because of its well-maintained intensive care situation. As such, the importance of investing in the healthcare sector will surely inspire global governments at large. It has finally come to the notice of people that amidst a crisis, money can't prevent contagion. If at all another contagious disease arises, it will actually be the access to the healthcare facilities which would prevent contagion and help to suppress the spread of the disease. It is quite clear that in the absence of efficient healthcare systems, people will definitely perish and we certainly won't be able to handle the next outbreak.
Surveillance As An Ongoing Measure
If we consider the Indian state of Kerala, we can conclude the fact that because of the local testing centres that made the reach of the testing possible to the general public, the outbreak was controlled. For this, Kerala began its process of contact tracing as soon as the intensity was observed to rise. This anticipatory measure laid the foundation of curtailing the spread of the disease in such a short period.
Post-COVID-19, governments will have to ensure that the surveillance systems function efficiently. If we could manage systematic and elaborate surveillance systems during this pandemic, then we are certainly armed to improve them for the next crisis. Moreover, if we keep monitoring the appearance of newer contagious diseases, we can come up with better preventive measures in lesser time. Not only this, but the importance will also have to be given to quick decision making by the authorities.
Another meaningful change that the healthcare systems are expected to observe after COVID-19 is sustainability. The sector will have to come up with sustainable solutions if they want to last them for longer. Sustainability refers to preparing for the future without harming the existing resources. This would only help us in managing the future crisis since the resources destroyed right now would only make the future generations famished.
For instance, digitising healthcare solutions may help massively. One can know the status of the diseased and disease-free population through digital platforms without the need to destroy natural resources for additional infrastructure.
Believe it or not but in some countries telemedicine has skyrocketed during this pandemic. The fact that digital health applications have been benefiting people cannot be avoided. Nowadays, devices like digital stethoscopes, portable ECG monitors and otoscopes can be bought by the general public. The results can then be shared with a medical health practitioner through the means of a platform or even email. The need to go to a hospital or clinic physically will be largely reduced, and as such, the healthcare systems would avoid the unnecessary burden.The mass effects of the novel coronavirus have taught us a lot of things. Using our money judiciously and making sure that our immunity and body's requirements are well taken care of, only comprise one of the few lessons that we have learnt. However, everyone is quite confident that the healthcare sector will definitely see some advancements since when the problem arises, it is this sector which deals with the crisis at the forefront!