Guest Blog: The Fascinating Trends Revolutionising Healthcare

Final year Lancaster Medical School student, Maria Dobrzynska, writes why she is passionate about innovation in health care and why the future is exciting for health.

Billions of investments in the healthcare industry, including the Health Innovation Campus at Lancaster, are driving advances and transforming healthcare globally. Digital health, artificial intelligence, genomics, personalized medicine and 3D printing are just a few concepts, which are being applied to improve health and healthcare.

As a medical student and a future doctor, I am really excited about what the future holds for patients and healthcare practitioners. For example, it is estimated that five to ten years from now surgical robots will be an average sight in operating theatres and that artificial intelligence will be actively used in radiology departments to aid diagnosis. Experts also predict that, not long from now, pharmacies in hospitals will 3D print personalized medications for patients. Patients’ attitude to digital health technologies is also changing. More and more patients are using apps to prevent and diagnose skin cancer or use AI-powered health companions in their phones to get healthcare advice instead of visiting their doctors. Just recently, we have seen the success story of a patient being diagnosed with a life-threatening condition based on her Fitbit data, which might not have been picked up in time if not for the wearable device.

It seems like the practice of medicine will change dramatically over my lifetime and as a student I see it as my obligation to learn how to best use the novel technologies in medicine for patient’s advantage. Fortunately, more and more healthcare and education institutions are putting innovation at the heart of their actions like Lancaster University with the investment into the Health Innovation Campus. Indeed, it is the multidisciplinary work between clinicians, innovators, academics and businesses, which brings the best and most exciting results; such as a wearable using AI to identify, alert of and track seizures, which was FDA approved only this week.

I am certain that novel technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, virtual and augmented reality, 3D printing and cheap genome sequencing will dramatically change the medicine we know today. In order to drive advances in those technologies entrepreneurs, academics and clinicians need to come and work together. That is why I find events such as the annual WIRED Health conference to be a fantastic educational and networking opportunity for me as a future doctor, but also for anyone looking for the tools and inspiration to tackle the most important challenges of healthcare.

If –like me – you would like to tap into the fascinating trends revolutionizing healthcare check out the WIRED Health 2018 conference and get 20% off all rates with the code LEC20: http://wired.uk/health-lec20 .