How Medicine Will be Redesigned After CoVid? The Covid-19 pandemic has tested society as a whole and made an undeniable impact on healthcare across all care settings, while at the same time illuminating ways the industry must improve moving forward. The strain the virus has placed on care delivery serves as an opportunity for both reflection and growth, as we look to advance our public health infrastructure.
I think that there might be several ways that medicine (Karen Antman’s voice) will change and never go back. The first is, I think telemedicine is here to stay. We switched to it, immediately the insurance companies realizing the risks of their patients agreed to cover it. That of itself would never have been done before and we had large numbers of physicians basically taking care of their patients to the extend they could, online.
So how Medicine Will be Redesigned After CoVid? We have discovered that telemedicine is just terrific. I think this is just going to make a major change. I think that we also discovered that a lot of this work can be done in our home and probably more efficiently. Also that academically classrooms are going to be more online, so that’s going to be a change. Then if we’re really lucky, the American public will insist that we have better public health. So, we can put more money into public health and prevention and we would then need less money into acute care.
We saw the same thing with 9/11, I was in New York City at the time. I think that the respect continues even to this day from even that particular incident but it’s not the same as it was at the time.
This class of medical students is going to be more likely to become infectious disease doctors, public health doctors. I can’t imagine that this won’t have an impact on what positions in training choose to be. We already have new courses on telemedicine and we have new courses on emergency management or disaster management. This is an opportunity to see how you manage putting up field hospitals for hurricanes and outbreaks.
We hope that the American public may realize to a much greater extent how much their health depends on the people around them. This is a very clear message that we need to be taking care of all Americans in this country. We have this to a great extent in Massachusetts, we don’t, and many of the other states in the country.
I firmly hope that we see medical care as a right and not as a privilege and that everyone in the United States would get access to healthcare and that we would have Public Health like many other developed countries already have. That’s well organized in a system. It’s incredibly inefficient the overhead in the United States is 20% to 30%. In most other developed countries, it is 3 to 5%, and in Medicare and in the VA is 3 to 5%. We don’t need to be spending all the money on the overhead, we need to be spending on actual care and even more important prevention.
The worst fear right now is in this particular infection and other infections. The reason is we are seeing more emerging infectious diseases around the world. Are we going to see pandemic after pandemic? Furthermore, will we learn the lessons of this one? The lesson is that we really need to have our global plan for these incidents because they will happen again and if we don’t learn that lesson it would be a real shame.
The pandemic has forced the healthcare industry to change and never go back to as it was before. Telemedicine is quickly adopted and will last for sure, of course in terms of protection. I personally agree with Ms. Antman on the point that we have to see medical care as a right, not as a privilege, because we are in the 21st century and this should be something normal for us as intelligent species and not something we have to beg for.
The only part that I am curious about is how telemedicine works. Also, how is it proclaimed as more efficient than the casual one? It is true that a lot of medical students will now specialize in infectious diseases. This is because it is most needed at the current moment of our lives. Lastly, we must have a plan for upcoming pandemics. We have to learn our lesson from this one, and we have to be prepared in the future.