Moving Care from the Hospital to the Home

 In Medical Product Design

The University of Southern California has unveiled an exciting innovation in healthcare technology, the Virtual Care Clinic. Located at the school's Institute of Creative Technologies, this breakthrough in home medical products combines a wide array of technologies including mobile apps, virtual care providers, virtual technology, healthcare analytics, artificial intelligence and digital communications to provide "borderless care delivery" to patients anywhere in the world.

Virtual Care, Real Results

This intuitive healthcare technology works because most medical care can actually be delivered through artificial intelligence. Patients apply biosensors that can help lead to the diagnosis, and virtual clinicians help patients weigh the pros and cons of treatment options. Virtual doctors are able to take over the more repetitive tasks. A hospital's most precious commodity is the physicians' medical expertise, and this service frees them up for the most complex treatments. Rather than replacing doctors, virtual clinicians are taking care of the simpler, more repetitive tasks so the doctors can focus on the situations that require a more personal touch. 

"Virtual healthcare can reduce costs by 60 to 80 percent."

Reduced Costs, Improved Comfort

By providing virtual healthcare services to patients rather than requiring them to come in for all appointments, USC hopes to improve efficiency and reduce costs. Beth Kutscher of Modern Healthcare reported that virtual healthcare can reduce costs by 60 to 80 percent, saving the brick-and-mortar hospitals and doctor's offices for patients who require special attention. Virtual care is also more comfortable for patients, who can meet with doctors in the comfort of their own homes. 

Democratization of Healthcare

Dr. Leslie Saxon, Executive Director for the Center for Body Computing, referred to the program as the "democratization of healthcare" in a recent press release. She added, "this healthcare model will empower patients, improve quality outcomes with more precision medicine analytics and diagnosis, and enhance the physician-patient relationship by creating a contextualized experience and seamless communication that puts the patient in the driver seat of their own health care experience and outcomes."

The VCC will initially be offering ophthalmology and urology care for the next few months, and branching out from there. It's Dr. Saxson's hope that all 1,500 medical experts will eventually be taking part in the virtual program. 

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