Advancing Health Technology Education


Health care education has been the forerunner in adapting innovative technologies because medical education and healthcare management have been intertwined in student teaching-learning methodologies. The advent of advanced technologies in the 21st century has accelerated the process of evolution of hardware and software, leading to faster adoption of these in medical education and the healthcare system.

Previously, health education was limited to government sector. But this widened the gap between supply and demand and the availability of doctors was scarce. This led to the establishment of more medical schools in India while a majority of private hospitals were established.

ggovernment vs private hospitals
The primary teaching material in a healthcare campus is a patient. On the whole, patients admitted to government medical institutes received free treatment, as the state pays for it. Such a population has always been cooperative in attending teaching-learning sessions. With the advent of private medical schools, this equation has changed. Often patients refuse to be part of the teaching and learning environment since they are paying for their treatment. Moreover, in highly literate states, patients would not be forthcoming under such circumstances.

Evolution of medical training
Medical education has quickly moved from chalkboards and patients to smart classrooms and virtual patients. The technological transformation of medical education has transformed primary health care into advanced quaternary care, in the form of robotics. This has been possible due to the rapid advancement in medical education technologies by raising the gold standards of medical curriculum through mapping, blueprinting, changing goals of specific learning, application of teaching learning, virtual patient assessment and other rapidly accelerating high-fidelity technologies. during the global pandemic.

New technologies are imbibed into the healthcare system for the benefit of patients. This includes the patenting of better drug delivery methods, nanotechnology/genetic studies, biotechnology advances, robotics in laparoscopic surgeries and artificial prostheses. Multi-organ transplantation and/or hand transplantation requires new methodologies and theories. The qualification of doctors within the framework of these innovations is essential to health training to avoid any disruption. Highly accredited medical schools organize fellowship training programs to ensure the same.

Electronic health records, AI, robotics, evolution of online courses on various platforms, application of modern technologies in biomedical research have increased medical teaching technologies as well as platforms more recent and interactive assessments, as provided in various state-of-the-art learning management systems (LMS). . Teaching and learning methodologies have evolved rapidly even after the pandemic has slowed, as evidenced by the advent of evolving technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT), envisioning a future where physical and digital entities can be linked.

Competency Based Medical Education (CBME) has guidelines for asynchronous learning as well as synchronous learning. Learning should not be limited to lectures or teaching hours. Students are encouraged for self-directed learning through exploratory methods, which may include online learning modules and published literature sources, and the role of the faculty member or teacher is a facilitator for the same thing. This encourages learners to be autonomous in the teaching-learning process and to be updated with the latest concepts.

Conventional conferences used to be didactic, whereas now they are interactive and take place in ICT (Information and communication technologies) enabled classrooms. Simulation centers built in medical schools assist in simulation learning that ranges from small procedural interventions on models to a life-size simulation patient. This helps learners gain hands-on experience of the real thing, without the involvement of an actual patient following CBME guidelines. The role of telemedicine in delivering health care to remote areas is essential in health care education today. It has played a pivotal role given the involvement of online teaching-learning methodologies.

(The author is principal and teacher, RheumatologyAmrita School of Medicine, Amrita Vishwa VidyapeethamCochin)

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