"Even now, young doctors accustomed to social networking have been pushing for change, introducing new and more convenient practices into the industry," he said. "This up-and-coming workforce are already asking why they cannot log onto an online portal and dispense drugs to patients remotely which is now made possible through the cloud.".
"By adopting IT into its operations, the healthcare industry has improved tremendously in many areas," added Dr Nam. "Besides innovating services that focus on value for money, better practices and enhanced offerings have also been introduced. This includes transparent and interactive medical information sharing activities across the healthcare value chain, improvements on medical and healthcare service standards, and an increased focus on preventive healthcare."
Collaboration is essential
"These developments have made it clear that IT is the prime enabler for the healthcare industry," said Dr Nam. "Current examples of on-going advancements include consumer driven healthcare, preventive health research, tele-healthcare, biotech, and enhanced collaborative efforts between pharmaceuticals."
"Cloud technologies will result in better IT integration with health services over the coming years," he said. "Interestingly, one major innovation that many are expecting to see soon is a unified architecture for healthcare services. Such facilities will provide and improve on process scalability as well as total service-awareness for health providers."
"Current demands for improved healthcare services will see the emergence of next generation IT companies," said Dr Nam. "These new comers will be the ones who will help enhance the available medical services that we have now. As such, it is now a matter of when these IT market players will be able to work with the healthcare industry to produce the critical innovations that it currently needs."
"Collaboration with other IT providers such as Microsoft would help to deliver a better level of healthcare in Asia," said Dr Nam. "We are extremely pleased to be partnering with Microsoft to realise cost-effective healthcare solutions that are interoperable and which meet the needs of both patients and healthcare providers so that the entire health ecosystem can be engaged in achieving a more proactive and sustainable healthcare model."
Microsoft Asia-Pacific's corporate PR lead Michael Ang agreed with the importance of collaboration. "Cloud services today encompass a broad range of possibilities such as online health and wellness tools, application development, data and image storage and sharing. IT innovation can help to bring the healthcare industry to the next level."
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