The effects of technology on modern healthcare are vast and limitless. From the smallest private practice to the largest academic medical institution, the continuing advancement of medical devices and tools plays a huge role in everyday function.
Technology influences every aspect of medical care and diagnosis, providing practitioners with an ever increasing wealth of data and insight into the form and function of the human body. Today’s advances provide all new highs in medical image quality, sample diagnostic, surgical processes and the formulation of new drugs.
These advancements have had mixed effect on the cost of healthcare. Some new technologies have streamlined medical processes, making them cheaper through greater efficiency. Others have increased costs, as clinics and hospitals now utilize increasingly complex (and therefore expensive to both buy and operate) equipment.
As industry standards rise and new technologies become available, practitioners and scientists alike are engaged in a race to obtain the latest and greatest equipment for their patients.
Due to the high cost of many pieces of advanced equipment, often access to the very best technology is limited to a mere handful of institutions with large enough financial resources to own and operate such devices, such as large specialized hospital facilities, well-endowed academic institutions and commercially funded labratories.
New technologies are constantly being refined, however, such that top of the line equipment eventually becomes cheaper to produce and more readily accessable.