What is eHealth?
We use digital tools everywhere these days. Even in the hospital! Smart eHealth applications make the entire care process easier and more efficient. Both for patients and caregivers. In this article, we tell you everything you need to know about eHealth.
The term eHealth stands for electronic health. In other words, electronic care. This is a catch-all term by which we mean all forms of digital care. We are not talking about the EHR, but mainly about innovative applications with digital tools.
In addition, the term mHealth is becoming more familiar. This stands for mobile health and refers to digital care by means of mobile devices. So this is part of eHealth.
Types of eHealth applications in hospitals
Most eHealth applications are mobile apps and Web applications. Apps are downloaded onto a mobile device and web applications are opened from the browser. The use of robotics is not included in eHealth.
Much of eHealth is patient-centered: asking questions, informing and monitoring. But there are also applications that support the work of hospital staff. Think, for example, of eHealth applications that help with diagnosis or step-by-step plans: these apps provide (standardized) suggestions or tasks for the next step in the care process. This saves a lot of time.
Implementing eHealth in healthcare
eHealth can be used at various stages of the care process. One goal is to reduce physical visits. By replacing them with digital appointments, for example. Coming to the hospital unnecessarily is never fun, of course, and many appointments are just as effective with an online consultation.
- Even before the patient comes to the hospital, eHealth applications can be used to reach a diagnosis through questioning.
- After surgery, eHealth can be used to monitor the patient through home monitoring. This way, hospital beds are not unnecessarily occupied and the patient can recover at home in their own familiar surroundings.
Later in this article we will show some examples of eHealth being used in practice.
Benefits of eHealth
Besides minimizing physical visits, eHealth has many other benefits. Both for the patient and the hospital deploying the applications. Here are the most important ones:
- Work more efficiently. Perform fewer repetitive tasks, better communication and less physical contact is needed. This leaves more room for other tasks.
- Lower costs. Because eHealth prevents a lot of communication and physical appointments, it saves a lot of time and therefore costs. In addition, home monitoring ensures that fewer beds are occupied. This, too, reduces costs.
- Better quality care. Because less time is spent on (unnecessary) administration - think retyping data - hospital staff can focus on what really matters: delivering good care.
- More knowledge. Monitoring and analysis of questionnaires provide a lot of data. And more data leads to more knowledge and insight, which in turn leads to opportunities to improve the quality of care.
- More patient autonomy. Patients can follow what is going to happen and why. Also, much is possible from home without coming to the hospital.
- Reduced recurrence and complications. By monitoring and asking questions, many problems are found quickly and remotely. In case of any complications, the hospital is immediately informed.
- Patient satisfaction increases. Patients are used to digital applications these days. There is an app or tool for everything. Almost everywhere, except in healthcare. By offering it though, satisfaction visibly increases.
- Employee satisfaction rises. Hospital employees also like being able to work with today's solutions.
Examples of eHealth
eHealth applications have been taking off in recent years. There are many innovative applications that make the work of hospital staff and the lives of patients much more pleasant. We mention a few particular solutions.
- Synappz: Monitoring the patient while they are at home. Patients can take their own measurements at home and fill in the data. The healthcare provider can then view the data in the portal and send dosed information relevant to the patient over the care pathway.
- OnlinePROMS: Paper questionnaires are outdated. With this app, PROMs and PREMs questionnaires are administered digitally. The app analyzes the answers and recognizes risks. Caregivers can respond to them without having to completely figure out each questionnaire.
- Bingli: During physical appointments, a lot of time is lost on history and symptom questions. With Bingli, these questionnaires are already taken digitally prior to the consultation, leaving more time for a conversation with the patient during a consultation - to answer questions, for example.
- Medicus.ai: This application helps people better understand their health by explaining their medical reports and health data in a personalized, understandable and visual way.
eHealth are digital healthcare applications that fit in well with modern life. Care providers work more efficiently and patients gain more insight into (and control over) their care process. In addition, the data collected by these digital tools provides new insights for optimizations within the care process. This is how eHealth helps advance the quality of care!