What to expect in healthcare in 2023 and beyond

This year, the healthcare industry will continue to shift many of its burdens over to high-tech systems, with an increasing emphasis on at-home care enabled by online technology. However, this only partially addresses the burdens healthcare workers continue to feel – burnout, compassion fatigue, and other social determinants of health.

Patients will not be the only ones staying home; staff will work remotely, too. To keep industry morale high, healthcare companies may find themselves in the position of most other industries in 2023, considering fundamental changes to the working day, such as implementing 4-day work weeks and increasing social support services for staff to retain employees.

Progressive technology vs. in-person healthcare services

Industry analysts say digital health businesses have the most spectacular short-term potential. Healthcare organizations recognize the need to invest in technology to help them operate more efficiently in an increasingly complicated macro environment. 

The COVID-19 pandemic spurred rapid adoption of healthcare technology, but as 2022 came to a close, various indicators pointed to a slowdown in growth. Despite a decline in telehealth use since its apex in the early 2020s, some industry analysts claim that the need for virtual treatment will only increase—telehealth is here to stay. 

According to Schoenberg, CEO of the telemedicine firm Amwell, “what most healthcare is about” is increasing treatment through telehealth. As consumers’ priorities alter, experts predict a decline in the number of digital health point solutions that address those needs. In 2023 and beyond, physicians may need to rethink their approach to patient care, which might fuel a boom in the telehealth industry. This year, there will be a greater focus on ensuring the quality and safety of virtual care as it is brought up to the same quality as in-person care. 

As more AI-powered medical devices get FDA clearance, more service providers will incorporate AI into their workflow. The rate of federal green light approval is speeding up. West Monroe, a digital consulting business, predicts that healthcare providers will require assistance bridging the gap between patient expectations and the reality of the healthcare experience. 

Healthcare firms will boost their cybersecurity budgets due to increased data protection incidents. Standards for protecting sensitive medical information and preventing cyberattacks may expand this year, marking a tipping point for AI’s practical use. In this age of constant connectivity, it is shocking that the federal government still needs to pass comprehensive data regulations. However, the healthcare sector will keep fighting to safeguard patients’ data and win over those who are leery of the industry’s collection and use of their private medical information.

Continued opportunities, increased needs due to pandemic

Since time immemorial, nurses have been the health industry’s backbone. The COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting need for Family Nurse Practitioners (FNPs)in the face of a primary care physician shortage are both factors that point to an increase in interest in nursing as a profession in the year 2023. Greater autonomy for FNPs is warranted as their demand rises in response to such a shortage and to rural hospitals closing. 

By 2031, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that the number of positions available to registered nurses will increase by 195,400. Gaining a college degree will become the standard to keep or raise salaries. There was a 3.3% rise in the number of students enrolled in baccalaureate nursing programs between 2020 and 2021, which led to more training and more states adopting the improved Nurse Licensure Compact. 

Thanks to advances in telehealth and chatbot technology, it is becoming less complicated for people to get the medical attention they need. The reduced burden is good news for nurses, therapists, and physicians. They utilize the technology to better care for patients with mobility issues or to improve safety for those at high risk of severe illness if exposed to the coronavirus. 

More men are entering the nursing profession, and the trend toward holistic care has the potential to increase efficiency, quality, and safety for patients. Health informatics is gaining popularity as more advanced medical tools become available. To effectively care for their increasingly well-informed patients, nurses of 2023 will need to develop active listening and synthesis skills. 

Even as the coronavirus pandemic becomes endemic, nurse practitioners will continue to offer essential services, including patient education, research, and treatment. Inequalities in society and the economy will provide nurses with opportunities to better the lives of their patients in 2023 and beyond.

Across all healthcare domains, perpetually affirming data continues to demonstrate that increased screen time due to teleworking, distance education, and social networking may increase stress and burnout. As ever, technological breakthroughs will occur, and with them, the likelihood that healthcare personnel may experience mental health problems, weariness, and burnout will rise. 

Staff/patient workflow, relationships, and personalized care

While not exclusive to the healthcare industry, healthcare is likely to adopt changes that are happening globally. Among these are four-hour workweeks, more significant support for mental health services, etc.

Hospitals will also triage their patients more selectively with more remote healthcare possibilities. This means that we will begin to see virtual systems we have not seen before, such as virtual wards—a core group of remote specialists taking care of people staying at home.

However, the number of staff at hospitals/therapy offices are likely to stay the same, and the number of beds in ICUs/clinics will remain the same. Shorter stays, with more intensive care, are more likely.

Precision medicine, in which medications and other treatments are customized to a group of patients based on criteria such as age, genetics, or risk factors, will become more widely available to patients in 2023. A person’s genomic data is used in cutting-edge kinds of customized medicine to assist doctors in foretelling which treatments will work best for specific patients and which ones may have adverse effects. 

Predictability of outcomes may also increase along with the use of AI and ML algorithms. Ronda Lehman, PharmD. President of Mercy Health, says, “We will need to stop doing ‘to people’ and start caring ‘with people.’” Patients will continue to gain agency and knowledge due to advances in AI and the proliferation of information accessible to consumers. This will enable and empower patients “to make informed decisions.” 

Furthermore, patients are given a more extensive range of options in terms of how their care is organized and carried out. Thanks to the application of personalized healthcare, providers take into account the individual’s history, preferences, and philosophical foundations in determining the best method and setting for care. You should expect this to be a significant development all through 2023. So will a focus on hope and nurturing relationships between provider and patient. These focal points will contribute to reliability and use the relational experience as the “secret sauce” for attaining the tripartite goals of better care for people, better health for communities at a reduced cost, and greater employee well-being, according to Christine Sinsky, MD, AMA vice president of professional satisfaction.

Profound compassion and action to help healers avoid burnout

The trajectory of potential, outside the remaining months of 2023, could be for healthcare to continue increasing aims to take advantage of the potential benefits of technology to save more lives. Unless the importance of these goals is impressed upon health workers, many of them may have mental health issues that will get worse in the years to come. As with other members of the healthcare community, a lack of support and resources could exacerbate problems if not kept within the bottom line of organizational wellness strategies.

This increased demand for mental health support means a shortage of therapists/healthcare workers to support healthcare staff. Many therapists, like nurses and doctors on the medical front, are crumbling from higher demands for care and leaving their once-fulfilling profession. 

Without adequate employer support, dealing with vicarious trauma and stress, lacking emotional support from peers, and neglecting to take advantage of available resources will continue to create an incumbent need to address the invisible mental health crisis of healthcare professionals. This crisis is undoubtedly tipping over into organizational reliability, quality patient care and continuity. Attention to the Surgeon General, who has made healthcare worker burnout and wellness a top priority, can make effective solutions more likely.. 

More vigorous attention on improved health and well-being

Similar to how consumers are expected to get good value from their purchases, value-based care is founded on a set of precepts. Patients now better understand medical jargon, average conditions, and strategies for maintaining good health. 

As a result of their increased knowledge and determination, patients now demand openness, reliability, and control over personal health information. There is an increase in healthcare consumerism, in part because of the trend to move caregiving into patients’ homes. Hospitals realized they needed to keep patients at home during the COVID-19 pandemic to limit the spread of the virus. 

Without sacrificing quality or availability, McKinsey predicts that as much as $265 billion in care spending might move out of institutional settings and into private homes over the next three years. Recent developments in RPM and RTM have made it possible for clinicians to get patients’ vital signs, like blood pressure, heart rate, and glucose levels, in real time. With the help of modern technology, many diseases may be tracked in the comfort of one’s home. 

Patients will be made aware of how to save energy and extend the life of their batteries, as well as how to maintain a reliable internet connection at home and safeguard their personal information. Having a consistently functioning system will be essential. Thus, all devices will continually need powering and linking. Even if the capacity to secure patient data security, privacy, and transparency has yet to be thoroughly addressed, rising patient acceptance of care at home is increasing the possibility of moving more complicated care to residences.

Each year brings with it the hopeful, promising, and unknown. Navigating healthcare through 2023 will be the same. For all the change this year has carried over and will start anew, Healing Breaths provides unprecedented service to the healthcare community. Science shows that our strategies are optimal for managing stress, increasing vitality, fortifying resilience, and warding off burnout.