Subscribe to Entrepreneur for $5
Subscribe

Areas in Medtech That Need Innovative Entrepreneurs

Post-pandemic, innovation will accelerate and open new opportunities.

By
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Medicine has always been one of the most important industries for humanity. Since people's lives are literally saved by how well the practitioners can do their jobs, there has been a lot of effort put into making new tools and processes available for the improvement of medical practice.

For the past few years, the rate of that innovation has increased drastically, as a result of a variety of factors, not least among which is the pandemic, which highlighted the need for people to be in the best health possible. For entrepreneurs, investors and others who might be interested in the space for any reason, these are exciting times, and here are some of the most notable trends to keep an eye on.

Precision medicine

The goal of precision medicine, according to the Journal of Transnational Medicine, is to enable scientists, innovators, healthcare providers and others to be able to provide the most suitable medicine, at the right dose, for the right person, at the right time and at a reasonable cost.

The path to accomplishing that is focused on understanding the makeup of different subsets of people to identify how their bodies and minds react to different treatments, such that instead of prescribing general treatments, people would be able to get the precise kind of treatment that would be best for their conditions. The availability of big data in the form of exercise and activity records, digitized healthcare data and others is also making it increasingly efficient to analyze healthcare trends to be able to make the right medical decisions on a person-to-person basis.

Here the concerns are primarily around the security of health data to be sure that only entities with the right legal powers and intents can access it, which is why innovators in this area are focused on developing harmonized solutions to ensure data privacy, safety and security in health-data management.

Related: Top 3 Healthcare Mutual Funds to Strengthen Your Portfolio

Virtual/augmented reality

As a result of the pandemic and a general shift in culture, many activities that used to take place physically have now been moved online, with people conducting everything from business meetings and parties on platforms like Zoom and Google Meet. Medical consultations have also largely shifted online with the advent of telemedicine, enabling medical professionals to assess patients and give diagnoses online.

Virtual and augmented reality technology has taken telemedicine further by allowing patients to visualize themselves with different features that they would have after medical procedures, especially cosmetic surgery. Now, patients can interact with a surgeon to get an evaluation of their cosmetic surgery ideas, get a liposuction cost quote and even play around with their image in different apps to see exactly how they would look with a smaller waistline, larger hips or any other change in appearance.

Related: 3 Medical Device Companies for the Long-Term Investor

Remote practice

At a hospital in China in 2019, 5G was used to conduct a surgery remotely, with the surgeon located in a Hainan hospital 3,000 kilometers away from the patient in Beijing, to insert a brain stimulation device to combat Parkinson's disease. Last year, a remote robotic surgery was also performed in a throat operation in Milan, Italy, establishing this new system as a viable tool for all kinds of surgeries.

This new approach has been made possible by the advent of 5G technology with its incredibly fast data transfer rates and low latency, which make it possible to take action in real-time. Adoption will likely increase, especially if it continues to be necessary for people to self-isolate for periods, and just generally to minimize the necessity of travel by highly-skilled physicians.

In conclusion, it is clear that today, Medtech is in a state of intense innovation where technology is being used to optimize every aspect of medical operations from the time a patient makes their first search on Google to find a physician or understand their symptoms, to the time when a surgeon operates on them. The field holds immense promise for entrepreneurs, investors and every human as medical advancement will inevitably lead to longer, healthier lives for people worldwide.

Related: The Digital Pharmacist

Entrepreneur Editors' Picks