With 2020 bringing new possibilities for the future of healthcare technology, it’s good to look back on the things that researchers, scientists and medical practitioners have accomplished across the span of human history. Ever since tribes of ancient humanoids discovered that washing animal wounds can prevent infection, healthcare has been an integral part in human society. While we may consider the capacities of our forebears to be primitive and irrelevant, their practices paved the way for the more sanitary and efficient methods of physician care in the modern era. Things like catheters or mobile medical apps would not have been developed without the creation of devices like iron lungs or The same goes for their healthcare technology, which saw a long and fascinating process of evolution.
Healthcare Technology in Antiquity
The various civilizations of the ancient world would not have developed without proper sanitation, medical practice, and technology to facilitate patient care. Hygiene was important to the ancient Egyptians, who followed the literal definition of “cleanliness is next to godliness.” Speaking of Egyptians, ancient parchments and hieroglyphic inscriptions indicate that the people of Egypt had their own medical records. Ancient civilizations also had surgeons, such as in Babylon.
Medieval Era-early 20th Century
Despite its status as the “middle-child” of history, an ill-reputed era between the wonders of the ancient world and the innovations of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, the Medieval era saw its fair share of medical advancements. The organization of hospitals, the usage of leeches (which is still relevant today in certain treatments) and the creation of glasses began in the Middle Ages, while the practice of surgery and anatomy began to develop further. The legacy of medieval surgery would be immortalized in the Rembrandt painting The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp.
Later centuries would see further developments, such as the stethoscope in 1816 courtesy of Rene Laennec. The aforementioned iron lung was developed by Phillip Drinker and Louis Agassiz Shaw but was improved by John Haven Emerson in 1931 to combat the polio epidemic. Other medical developments like ultrasound and penicillin were created in the troubling times before, during and after the World Wars.
The electronic health record was conceived around the late 1980s, building on the growing complexity of computers. Nowadays, EHRs are ubiquitous and can be found in almost all hospitals around the world, facilitating treatment while other medical machines process stools, scan interior organs, and otherwise assist physicians to provide good healthcare for their patients.
Technology has changed a lot since the rise of human civilization. While technology like EHRs is certainly having their uses, such clerical machines have room for improvement, especially when they interfere with patient-physician interactions. Sync MD provides an electronic health record app that lets patients scan, digitize and compile their medical records. By using the Sync MD Pro App, doctors can request for their patient’s medical data in a swift and uncomplicated manner, reducing needless or redundant diagnosis. While this app is but a small part of medical technology, it can greatly enhance the process of medication and potentially improve patient-physician interaction in the future.