The Problems of Adopting a New Medical Device

Sep 3, 2023 | by Brad Bichey

Brad Bichey MD MPH

CEO Nemedic, Inc.

Overcoming Barriers to Innovative Care and Streamlining the Patient Journey

In today’s increasingly digitized world, the gap between what’s possible in medical innovation and what’s accessible to both surgeons and patients continues to widen. For surgeons, integrating new technologies into their practice comes with a set of challenges that exacerbate existing issues such as burnout, rising practice costs, and increased administrative burden. On the flip side, patients have a plethora of online resources but still find it challenging to connect with the right surgical care providers. When patients aren’t coming into your office asking for a specific innovative treatment, it becomes much harder to adopt that specific new technology.

Problems Surgeons Face

Technology Adoption

While new surgical technologies and procedures offer the potential for improved patient outcomes, as surgeons we often find it difficult to adopt them. The reasons vary from complex approval processes to lack of training and the steep costs involved in implementation.

Surgeon Burnout

Surgeons are unequivocally affected by the pervasive issue of burnout that plagues the healthcare sector at large. The administrative complexities associated with integrating novel technological solutions exacerbate an already demanding workload, resulting in diminished productivity and increased susceptibility to fatigue. This challenge within the medical field warrants immediate attention from all relevant stakeholders. As surgeons we should increasingly demand that innovations in medical devices be designed to minimize time and administrative burdens, and also thereby enhance the overall quality of patient care.

Rising Practice Costs & Administrative Burden

Escalating costs in surgical practices are not exclusively attributable to the adoption of new technologies. Surgeons are dedicating an unprecedented amount of time to administrative responsibilities, a diversion that not only detracts from patient care but also inflates operational expenditures. It is crucial to have an in-depth understanding of the challenges faced by surgeons. As the cost implications of medical device innovation come under increased scrutiny from practice administrators and hospital governance committees,

it is imperative for medical device and other partners to offer not merely cutting-edge innovation and enhanced quality of care, but also demonstrable value to the surgeons, their practices, and the larger healthcare ecosystem in which they operate.

Problems Patients Face

Finding the Right Provider

Amidst the winddown of the global pandemic, a significant paradigm shift has occurred as patients have overwhelmingly transitioned to online platforms for their healthcare navigation. This migration is not a temporary phenomenon; rather, it marks a permanent alteration in consumer behavior within the healthcare industry. Patients are increasingly influenced by internet resources for medical guidance. However, they frequently confront a labyrinth of inconsistent information, lackluster engagement, and a dearth of providers capable of offering advanced, specialized medical treatments. 

The result is often a wasteful expenditure of both time and resources, as patients navigate through a series of healthcare providers without finding one who can adequately address their specific surgical requirements. 

It is incumbent upon all stakeholders within the surgical ecosystem to adapt their strategies and systems to better engage with patients at their point of need. This responsibility should not be shouldered solely by individual surgical practices, particularly given the expansive resources available within the healthcare industry at large

Access to Innovative Care

As the field of surgical care undergoes rapid advancements, a notable gap persists in patients’ awareness and accessibility to these state-of-the-art treatments. Contrary to popular belief, the issue is not rooted in a scarcity of information or a lack of skilled providers. In fact, there is an abundance of qualified medical professionals in the field. The real challenge lies in the inefficiencies ingrained in the patient journey, which hinder the timely matching of patients with appropriate treatments and providers. 

Thus, the issue at hand is not one of resource scarcity or market penetration, but rather one of optimizing the system to meet the needs of patients in a timely and effective manner.

Solutions Tailored for the Surgical Space

Imagine solutions designed to bridge this gap, focusing not just on improving operational efficiencies, but also on elevating the quality of care.

Eliminating Inappropriate Patients on the Schedule

Leveraging advanced data analytics and Predictive Health technologies, meticulous pre-qualification of surgical candidates is needed, thereby ensuring that surgeons engage with patients who are genuine candidates for their specialized services. This targeted approach leads to a more judicious allocation of the surgeon’s valuable time and resources. It is imperative to acknowledge that human capital within the surgical field is a finite resource urgently requiring optimization.

Streamlining Patient Journeys

By providing tailored information and recommending suitable providers, solutions need to eliminate the need for multiple visits with the wrong providers, thereby saving time and resources for the patient.

Significantly Decreasing Time to Treat

All designs moving forward should seek to shorten the time from diagnosis to treatment by automating many of the administrative tasks involved in patient management. Both surgeons and patients benefit from quicker access to necessary care.

Why Custom SaaS Solutions Are the Future of Surgery

Should a surgical practice invest in generic virtual assistants and chatbots, only to find itself saddled with an overbooked schedule and suboptimal conversion rates, the question arises: has there been a meaningful improvement in operational efficiency? Surgeons remain susceptible to occupational burnout, while patients continue to experience protracted waiting periods for standard care.

In contrast, a custom designed Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution serves to mitigate not only the administrative burdens borne by surgeons but also streamlines patient navigation to the most appropriate and advanced treatments. By holistically addressing the challenges experienced by both healthcare providers and patients, such a specialized platform contributes significantly toward fostering a more equitable and efficient healthcare ecosystem.

Let’s not just adopt technology for the sake of being modern; let’s adopt the right technology for meaningful, impactful change. Together, we can create a movement that revolutionizes the surgical space and improves health equity across the board.

Join us as we shape the future of surgical healthcare. It’s not just about technology; it’s about better lives for our surgeon colleagues and the patients we serve.

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