With the intense pressure on healthcare systems like the NHS to cope with ageing populations, higher expectations of public healthcare provision and more complex illnesses, all in an environment of limited financial resources, healthcare providers need to re-think the way they deliver care. Using advances in technology effectively is a key enabler to make this happen, as The Economist outlines.
Picturing what hospitals could be, if the various obstacles are overcome, means abandoning long-held assumptions about the delivery of care, the role of the patient and what makes a good doctor. The first is what should happen where. “A hospital can also be at home,” says Lord Ara Darzi, a surgeon and professor at Imperial College London, a university that runs teaching hospitals.