2022 Predictions : Is Health Equity Emerging?

 

Various healthcare groups have systematic differences in their health status, referred to as health inequities. For example, people born in low-income areas may have limited access to education, medical care, proper housing, freshwater, and nutritious food, all of which influence health. 

It won’t be wrong to say that the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the health status of people in many ways. Even though healthcare inequities are not new, the COVID-19 pandemic brought the most severe and apparent gaps in healthcare to light. However, while the healthcare industry and the federal and state governments have taken steps to address health equity in some ways, experts agree that there is still a long way to go. 

As we move forward in 2022, here are the common predictions regarding health equity. 

Telehealth Will Be Accessible to All

Telehealth and other virtual care types will add value in 2022, providing opportunities to improve access and reduce inequity. EHR software will integrate telehealth so users can benefit from virtual health.  On the one hand, it will be relatively simple to assist caregivers at home. On the other hand, it will impact future generations as it is impossible to assume that elderly patients will access and use technology. 

Software Finder offers a wide variety of EHR software that provides telehealth capabilities to healthcare practitioners. This remote accessibility enables users to communicate and enhance the patient care process virtually.  

Overall, we anticipate a tighter integration of telehealth, particularly remote patient monitoring, with in-person care in 2022. The US healthcare system shifts to a value-based healthcare setting, improving efficiency and inequity in care. 

Data Gaps Will Persist

Data are necessary to identify disparities and evaluate efforts to handle differences as they arise. In addition, they assist in measuring progress toward more significant equity and set up accountability for progress. Inequities go unnoticed and unaddressed without adequate data.  

We still lack extensive data to analyze disparities in COVID-19 impacts and vaccine uptake nearly two years after the pandemic began. Moreover, looking ahead to the following stages of vaccination and pandemic recovery in 2022, data gaps will almost certainly persist, restricting our ability to identify and address disparities. 

Home-based Care Will Be More Common

As per a recent AARP report, more than 80% of adults want to stay in their homes and communities as they get older, preferring a home setting to a nursing home or other institutional environment. 

The rising demand for home care services, combined with the difficulties of retaining caregivers and rising turnover rates during the pandemic, has resulted in a caregiver shortage. Moreover, this has already had a significant impact on the entire homecare system in 2021 and will continue in the coming year. 

Our Thoughts

With COVID-19 hopefully ending in 2022, we expect it to be another year of significant change, growth, and innovation. HIMSS 2022 is just around the corner and we are yet to get some more insights. Stay tuned with us for more! 

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