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Technological Advancements in the Health Care Industry: Optimizing Healthcare through Prototyping

November 20, 2023 No Comments

by Mae Lewis

Many companies demonstrate a product through a prototype before they create a full version. The prototype demonstrates how the product works, the benefits it offers, the purpose it serves, and its features and functions. When used in the healthcare industry, prototypes can save money, improve patient care and overall satisfaction, and allow the development of new products, services, and devices.  Patients expect innovative services. With help from prototypes, delivering beyond expectations is possible.

What is Prototype Software in the Healthcare Industry?

A software prototype is a simple demonstration of a final product. It has the basic design and main features of the full-scale program so users clearly understand its features, functions, and proposals. The purpose of a prototype is to test the product on its target audience and gain valuable feedback to improve its design and functionality.

After stakeholders develop their product concept and its basic design, developers embark on the process of software prototyping. Most prototypes fail, although this should not be discouraging. Instead, developers can take the information they learn from gathering user feedback and improve the software.

Since it is a prototype and not a full-scale product, the financial and time loss is less significant. After refining the product, developers can create another prototype and once again try their launch. Many developers even test one version of the software against another.

Additional Benefits of Prototyping

Using prototypes during the pre-development phase of a software launch is extremely beneficial, as we’ve learned already. However, the benefits do not stop there. Prototypes in the healthcare industry reduce the company’s financial risk, reduce errors in the final product, increase patient satisfaction, benefit employees, and reduce the time developing the software requires.

Additionally, developing a prototype increases the odds of securing financing. Investors want to know their money is going toward products likely to be successful. Prototypes demonstrate how the product benefits the user and ultimately generates revenue.

How Prototyping is Used in the Healthcare Industry 

Prototyping software used in the healthcare industry focuses on improving patient care. As prototypes focus on improving software based on the user experience, developers understand the best strategies going forward in the production process.

Among the various ways prototyping benefits the healthcare industry:

– Appointment Scheduling: Scheduling an appointment should be a quick, streamlined process for patients. Testing the scheduling software before it is used in a real-world setting gives developers time to optimize its performance for an overall enhanced patient experience.

– Clinical Trials: Prototypes are often used in clinical trials to test the safety and performance of a new medication or medical product. Once the prototype testing is complete, the final product can be released to the general population.

– Health and Wellness Apps: Apps give patients an easy way to connect with their healthcare providers or get health information at their fingertips. The most useful health and wellness apps provide unique features that deliver results. A prototype allows developers to learn if users find their app beneficial. It can even pinpoint areas for improvement.

– Telemedicine Platforms: Telemedicine makes life comfortable for patients who need to see the doctor but can’t make it into the office. However, patients often find themselves overwhelmed and frustrated using the platforms. Patients can give their insight and input about a particular software.

– Customized Treatments: Prototyping software now enables medical practitioners to create customized treatment plans based on the patient’s specific needs and information like their lifestyle, medications, and genetics.

– Prosthetics and Orthotics: Creating custom-fitted prosthetics and orthotics is possible using 3D printing and scanning to create prototypes of each patient. Developing prosthetic and orthotic prototypes allows developers to create comfortable, more effective devices.

– Healthcare Worker Training: Healthcare constantly evolves and those working in the industry must grow with new technology and information. One way healthcare facilities train their workers is with prototype software. 

Benefits of Prototypes in the Healthcare Industry

Developing prototypes within the healthcare industry benefits the workplace and the patient experience, as outlined above. The benefits do not stop there, however.

If you want to learn about more about the benefits offered to the healthcare industry that utilize prototypes, keep reading.

– Reduced Risk: Using prototypes before launching software products reduces risk to the company. Users test the prototype and provide feedback, giving developers the tools necessary to improve the software. Developers can also find errors and bugs in the software before coding starts, reducing financial risks.

– Gain User Feedback: The purpose of a prototype is to gain user feedback after they test a product. This valuable feedback allows developers an opportunity to improve the product so it’s more user-friendly and innovative before incurring extensive resources.

– Simplify Administrative Duties: Prototyping software allows administrative duties to be streamlined and simplified. From daily reports to patient records, prototypes help minimize time spent on simple tasks so there is more time to spend on more important tasks.

– Heighten Communication: Communication is paramount in the healthcare industry. Healthcare professionals can clearly define their goals and purposes during the prototype creation process, ultimately developing a software program designed to expectations.

– Save Money and Resources: Using prototypes to determine how well a specific software performs reduces time and money  on coding and producing inefficient programs. Healthcare providers can also reduce operational costs as they improve their patient-care approach.

– Proof and Evidence for Investors: Securing funding from investors to help launch a new software program is not always easy, especially without proof the product works and will likely generate revenue. Why invest in products that may fail? Providing investors and other stakeholders with a prototype allows them to see a firsthand demonstration of the product and its anticipated results, increasing the odds of hearing ‘year’ to funding requests.

Innovate the Healthcare Game

Healthcare industries from hospitals to laboratories to medical doctors should never stop evolving. Patients depend on state-of-the-art care and services to keep them healthy at every stage of life. Software prototyping should be part of every healthcare facility since it provides one of the most innovative, unique, and beneficial approaches to patient care.

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