What Will the Future of Medical Education Look Like?

Every individual, business, and a sector living in society must adapt to any changes occurring in it. Especially when the world is facing pandemic. It challenges the existing medical education and demands changes in it as well. It also helped us realize the importance of an efficient healthcare system. Due to the pandemic, the growth of online education has gone up very high. Universities around the globe had to adapt to this method having no other choice. Many education streams are choosing online education as a safe and effective mode of education. Even the Medical stream has found its way to have an efficient education online. However, there are obstacles to resolve in online education. In an important field like medical, practical training is very essential. Remote learning won’t give the necessary practical exposure to the students. In order to be ready for the workplace, students must have direct patient contact in medical education which during times like these, seems dense.

Students must and will rely mostly on technology for their education. They must be trained to identify symptoms from home so they can monitor mild cases without contact. Equipment to know the readings of the patient’s health like fitness watches,  a remote stethoscope, and other similar tools might help professionals deal with illnesses virtually. However, not all cases can be treated that way. Some need in-person consultation. But in cases like Covid-19, virtual training and treatment help in containing the spread and treating more patients without risks. 

With the changing times, the importance of data collection and analysis has grown very much. The data collected helps healthcare professionals to analyze the condition of a patient and make instructive decisions in treatment. For example, the government of India started a mobile application called Aarogya Setu to track the people who are at risk of getting infected by Covid-19. The app collects surveys frequently with questions on the health conditions of the user. This data helps the government and the healthcare professionals to understand how much at risk a user is. Similarly, technology helps professionals to have data on functioning in a hospital by which they will be alerted when an anomaly in the data. Just like in treatments, data analytics help students in getting trained on how to treat mild illnesses virtually. 

Computer algorithms and Machine learning are becoming promising sectors in medical streams. With the help of Machine learning, there can be exemplary changes in Prognosis, Pathology, and Diagnosis. In Prognosis, Machine learning can use the data collected from electronic health records and create an advanced care plan for very serious illnesses. Advanced technologies can better understand the disease and find the cause, cure, and method to eradicate the disease by studying the genome and genetic mutation. 

The medical students are prone to high pressure in the workplace. They have to work with at most cautiousness because if there is one small wrong step they will be infected with the disease. The Covid-19 pandemic questions medical professionals’ emotional status. Their education and years of training are being challenged. Along with that, they have to go to work knowing that they are working with infected people and the chances of getting infected are so high. So it is important that students must be trained to work in unexpected circumstances and face the challenges of infection with competence. 

The Covid-19 outbreak also affected the economy worldwide. The medical stream is not an exception. The containment, treatment, and curing patients have been costly affairs. Mass production of countermeasures needed to control the pandemic from spreading among communities cost governments so much. Even medical professionals gear is a cost that needs to be counted as an unexpected expenditure. As long as the pandemic runs in the world and keeps impacting the economy the changes are hard to regulate in the medical stream. It is essential that even with mobility restrictions, students must be trained to work alongside new technologies and explore ways to learn during the times of restrictions.


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Blog Post written by:
Pavan Turaga
Intern
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