Diagnostics help us find answers to medical problems while also assisting us in pinpointing technical problems with equipment including devices and machines. An emerging field, diagnostics is taking on a larger role in many industries, including healthcare and product design.
Here are some recent diagnostic trends that are impacting medical and other industries, and some companies that are participating.
Early detection helps to save lives and achieve quality affordable healthcare.
A Globocan 2014 report noted that breast cancer is a leading cause of female cancer mortality with 23% of all female cancer cases and 14% of all female cancer deaths tied to breast cancer. Organizations have begun to focus on the development of more diagnostic tools and processes to assist with early detection. For example, POC Medical Systems is looking at alternative and complementary tests to improve early detection of breast cancer in women as well as help both men and women with cardiac indications. POC’s solution has offered a way to conduct tests without adding costs and time commitments for additional doctor visits and unnecessary lab visits. This also shortens the diagnosis time, so any necessary treatment can begin faster and improve the chances of survival. A greater emphasis is being placed on early detection diagnostics, which can save lives and enhance the number of people who can access quality affordable healthcare. With early detection, the costs of treatment are much lower.
Diagnostics enhances design freedom.
With the increasing need for new flexible products to address complex issues, diagnostics is part of the process to develop the new ideas. For example, one innovative company has developed a simple yet highly effective solution to address the weight, safety, and volume problems of traditional lithium-ion batteries. KalpTree Energy has Li-ion batteries that provide electronic device makers, medical device companies, tool makers, police and military vest manufacturers, and other companies be more flexible in their own product design. These batteries are lightweight and can be made into any shape. Since so many products rely on batteries, these Li-ion batteries are revolutionizing how design problems are solved.
Continuous monitoring improves real-time risk management in business systems.
With ongoing risk to an organization’s data and proprietary information housed in its computer operating systems, databases, and files, there is a trend toward more diagnostic solutions which help improve real-time risk management systems. McAfee has been developing systems that meet federal compliance requirements while continually monitoring at-risk assets, assessing new risks, and providing solutions to overcome those risks. At the same time, legacy systems can be included in the ongoing processes because there is a framework of continuous monitoring and intelligence-driven responses. This can protect the organization’s data and proprietary information. As more organizations add greater amounts of data to their legacy systems, this sustainable diagnostics trend will continue.
Diagnostic equipment has to be energy-efficient and recyclable.
Companies like Johnson & Johnson are enhancing energy efficiency in existing and new diagnostic equipment and producing more recyclable or reusable testing equipment. While the primary goal of all this equipment is to enhance healthcare and save lives, this trend towards efficiency also leads to use of fewer resources, such as energy. Diagnostics equipment manufacturers will increasingly focus on improving their products and systems to be more energy-efficient and recyclable.
Access to diagnostic equipment is growing through technology transfer.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has noted that there will be a greater effort to provide diagnostic equipment and tests for developing countries to combat infectious diseases that pose massive risk for people in those countries and the rest of the world. Typically, developing countries are using syndromic management, which has not only proven to be ineffective, but increases the risk of antibiotic resistance that can lead to further spread of untreatable infectious disease. The trend has been to look at building local innovation for diagnostics through technology transfer and partnerships with diagnostic companies that can share their knowledge to address this ongoing health issue that really affects all of us.
These sustainable diagnostic trends impact many industries and will help to address these modern problems and provide solutions for improved data protection, healthcare, and product design. As these trends continue to drive the development of diagnostics solutions, more exciting products will emerge.