While there is no question that almost every industry and sector was significantly impacted by Covid-19, there are few industries or sectors that were as deeply affected by pandemic as healthcare. That being said, these impacts were not necessarily felt the same way across the board. In addition, while some of the changes in healthcare that were brought about by the pandemic may continue moving forward, others are proving to be much more short-lived. Here are three ways that Covid changed healthcare.

 

  1. Telemedicine

 

Prior to the pandemic, telemedicine seemed poised to be a the next new wave of healthcare technology. Sure enough, as the pandemic set in, telemedicine took off. As the pandemic slowly begins to wax and wane, however, both healthcare providers and patients are showing a decided preference for in-person visits. While telemedicine offers a number of additional benefits to both patients and providers, such as decreased wait times and limited exposure to other sick people, it seems doctors and patients still prefer to see each other in person. That being said, the vastly increased efficiency that telemedicine provides may trump patient preferences. One way or another telemedicine is not going away any time soon.

 

  1. Labor shortages

 

It should come as no surprise that healthcare is one of the sectors being hit the hardest by worker shortages. In many cases, it is not so much that there are no trained personnel available but rather that they are burned out and exhausted and are simply leaving the industry in droves. In addition, however, the pandemic also interrupted educational institutions currently training the next wave of healthcare providers, which means that shortages in the healthcare industry are probably going to go right on creating disruption in healthcare for some time to come.

 

  1. AI

 

Although artificial intelligence was already making its way into healthcare, extreme labor shortages may only serve to increase the role of AI in medicine in the coming years. Not only can artificial intelligence step in to help better diagnose rare or unusual conditions, but can also help better analyze medical imaging and even create more efficient scheduling of shared spaces such as exam rooms or surgical suites. In addition, AI can quick comb through thousands of patient files to find similarities in rapidly emerging health conditions, such as Covid-19.