Read below the interview with Dr. Jit Seng TAN, Lotus Eldercare Health Services, learn how robots can improve elder care and gain the insight into the TeleHealth in clinical practice.
Dr. Jit Seng TAN
Director/Senior Home Care Physician
Lotus Eldercare Health Services
What is the impact of the digital revolution on patient experience and healthcare delivery? How does new technological advancement address key patient experience issues?
The impact is already being felt in terms of national electronic medical records, SMS reminders for medical appointments and HealthHub, a government portal for all Singaporean citizens on healthcare issues and records, for example, child immunization records.
New technologies like mobile apps can provide critical information to patients 24/7, for example, AIC’s MEL app to locate eldercare services in Singapore. We have one tender as well for right-siting patients to the correct counters effectively for those clinics requiring separate procedures to be done at separate counters.
How do you address the challenge of alignment – organizational culture, healthcare outcomes, service delivery and patient experience, or how do you prioritize?
It depends on what a system’s role is; for a private hospital, its leaders might prioritize service delivery and patient experience more, while public healthcare might prioritize cost efficacy of the healthcare outcome. Hence, the waiting times in polyclinics are still long despite many complains.
How can robots help improve elder care?
Robots can serve as very good monitoring equipment, and in the future, with better availability of A.I. technologies, they can automate many processes and reduce the need for manpower. They can be used in the case of more remote areas and also for the frail elderly who live alone.
What is the future of TeleHealth in clinical practice?
Starting with long-term home care service delivery, it might be the next big disruption in the way patients utilize healthcare services. A lot of information can already be obtained remotely, from blood pressure or ECG tracing to even ultrasound images and auscultation. It is only a matter of time until these become mainstream in the near future. I am already running a tele-geriatrics clinic weekly from a public hospital, serving about 8 to 10 nursing homes in the provision of medical and geriatric consultations.