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(Software) Engineering. The future of healthcare.

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We’re all more aware of our own health and how to prevent illness and infection these days. Though we can’t wait to get back to public spaces (safely!) we’re hoping that people take some of these learnings with them.

At the same time, we are also conscious of the growing skills gap in the tech sector, with data-driven skills shortages found to cost the economy £2bn a year and recent predictions highlighting that 30 percent of skills shortage vacancies were as a result of poor digital skills.

Demand for tech skills is continuing to grow and there’s a whole host of areas in which Software Engineers can take their career to the next level. One of the most dynamic (and critical) industries today is medical and healthcare – we have already seen just how much room there is for innovation in this area.

The future health of populations could be in the hands of Software Engineers, as much as it is healthcare professionals. To us, that’s an exciting prospect.

So, what could you achieve as a Software Engineer in the healthcare industry?

Roles are adapting, for the better

They way we use emerging technologies in medical devices, healthtech, pharmaceuticals, and public health systems is shifting how Software Engineers approach healthcare challenges.

Although an unexpected consequence, the way in which software has been harnessed to provide the public with contact-free healthcare services has opened the door for a wave of new roles in the sector. From wearables and trackers, to robotics and blockchain, it has never been a more exciting time to step into the industry.

Tech-led solutions are increasing in demand

Tech and Software Engineers have the power to transform healthcare into a sector which truly operates using a ‘prevention is better than cure’ philosophy, rather than only treating people when they are already ill. 

Through technologies such as artificial intelligence applications and machine learning techniques, digital solutions have (and will continue to) support the way patients can access healthcare. In fact, 28 percent of China’s population already uses connected health devices, the highest in the world. 

The opportunities are endless

Global healthcare spending is predicted to reach over $10 trillion by 2022, so it should come as no surprise that there is a wave of startups dedicat to improving preventative, diagnostic and reactive healthcare. It’s thought that the IoT alone can lower the costs of operational and clinical inefficiencies by $100 billion per year. 

Tech brings a new perspective to the field, enabling us to approach healthcare differently. Companies such as Curatio and Fig Health, for example, make use of private social health networks to connect patients, while organisations such as Cubismi, Careteam and Maya aim to offer care and diagnostics digitally. 

There are businesses which use tech to improve information sharing – while still adhering to privacy standards and regulations – such as R-Grid, which uses AI and cloud software to improve clinical trials operations, and Patientory, which utilises blockchain to facilitate and protect data sharing.

And there are those like Cala Health, BrightSign  and Open Bionics which all aim to improve the lives of people living with illnesses through the use of bioelectronics, wearables and bionics. The opportunities for Software Engineers within healthcare are truly limitless.

Demand for support is growing

There is an increasing demand for software support services, particularly as core functions within healthcare reassess more efficient ways of working. Together with this is the rise in low code technology, a global market which Gartner estimates will increase by 23.2 per cent in 2021 from 2020.

This will provide more and more opportunities for Software Engineers to support organisations, medical facilities and service providers with the skills and expertise to re-engineer their care solutions.

From artificial intelligence to new applications for pre-existing technologies, Software Engineers have been innovative in producing ways to fight the spread and effects of the virus – but this is only the beginning. The healthcare industry is evolving. And you can be part of it.

Software Engineers are the driving force for innovation. develop is scaling software engineering teams that shape our world. For more information, get in touch on 0207 733 0430.

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