Using VR to pre-simulate an upcoming operation, surgeons can browse MRI or other scanned 3D views of their patients to see what will happen to them during the procedure; Using gauze made of new materials to stop bleeding quickly, reduce the risk of surgery and promote postoperative recovery; Use the Internet of Things to monitor and track hospital medical devices and patients in real time, explain patients’ emergency distress signals, protect temperature-sensitive drugs and laboratory samples…
In recent years, enabled by science and technology, medical research has made continuous breakthroughs, and the speed is getting faster and faster. The past few decades have seen many innovations in information gathering, research, disease treatment and doctor-patient communication. From looking, smelling, asking and cutting to wearable devices to monitor health data, AI predicts protein structure; From cure to cure; From doctors to doctors and patients to work together, let patients also participate in the management of the disease.
In particular, with the booming development of emerging technologies such as AI, big data, cloud computing, 5G and the Internet of Things, the integration of these technologies has played an important role in disease monitoring, decision-making aid and health management, providing technical support for the construction of modern smart medicine, making it easier for patients to go to hospital, easier for doctors to practice medicine, and more efficient government governance. It has further boosted the development of our medical and health system.
With the gradual integration of emerging technologies and medical scene, emerging technologies will enable medical “background” and accelerate the process of smart medical construction. The medical technology industry is in the ascendant.
The development of medical robot faces great room for improvement
Medical industry is people’s livelihood industry, the overall market capacity is huge. Human’s pursuit of health and longevity will never stop, thus promoting the development of life science and technology, which also determines that the medical industry is an evergreen track. In addition, with the development of the world economy, the growth of the total population and the acceleration of aging, the global medical market demand has been expanding in recent years.
The expansion of medical market demand also presents the characteristics of high investment, high technology and high risk, and also has the consumption attribute of weak cycle. In particular, the development of science and technology has brought a lot of new equipment, drugs and treatment means, which has improved human health concept, medical technology, disease treatment level, and saved many patients’ lives.
In this context, enabling medical treatment with technology has become the general trend of the whole industry. Combined with the current excellent science and technology, medical technology is extremely critical in digital medical services, medical information, pharmaceutical information, Al drug research and development, AI medical imaging, organoid technology and biochips and other medical and health fields, and is one of the key development directions of future medical and health.
In recent two years, the development of surgical robots in China is also quite fast. According to statistics, since 2021, more than 20 types of domestic medical robots have been registered for forensics, and the products cover multiple segments such as abdominal cavity, orthopedics, neurosurgery, vascular intervention and oral implantation.
Statistics show that robot-assisted surgery accounts for only 4 percent of total surgical procedures worldwide, while endoscopic surgery accounts for about 35 percent and the remaining 60 percent are open procedures. This means that there is still a lot of room for improvement in the popularity of robot-assisted surgery.
AI Technology Is the Best Partner for Healthcare
On the early morning of January 24, 2020, Huoshenshan Hospital began construction and was delivered to use on February 2. Huoshenshan is trying to use an AI-assisted COVID-19 diagnosis system, which greatly reduces the burden of doctors reading the film. The telemedicine system is convenient for doctors to observe and analyze medical records such as CT images remotely under the 5G network, and experts from many places can consult together. Automated medical carts equipped with mobile cameras are used for cloud ward rounds, intelligent food delivery and medicine delivery.
This is the most concrete manifestation of medical technology. Among them, the most noteworthy is the application of AI technology in healthcare. In recent years, the medical application scenario has become more and more clear. By standardizing clinical procedures with a data-oriented approach, AI-driven clinical tools are expected to “improve the quantity and quality of medical services” in areas with poor medical resources.
Take the huge amount of medical data that doctors face every day as an example. It is the job of imaging doctors that AI technology can quickly find abnormal signs in massive images. For example, in the diagnosis of CTA and CCTA, the time needed to determine stenosis and plaque is not much, but manual extraction of blood vessels consumes a lot of time.
With the aid of AI, doctors can be freed up to a certain extent from repetitive labor and focus on diagnosis. In addition, the rapid mapping and structured reporting provided by AI allows doctors to make judgments only on this basis, helping to greatly improve efficiency while maintaining quality. On the “efficiency” dimension alone, AI has significant value.
Medical science and technology will develop deeply
We can say that the combination of AI technology and medical treatment opens a door for our medical science and technology. In order to further improve the application coverage of AI, in August 2022, the Ministry of Science and Technology and six other departments issued the notice on Accelerating Scene Innovation and Promoting high-quality Economic Development with high-level application of artificial Intelligence. It is clear to actively explore scenarios in the medical field such as intelligent medical image assisted diagnosis, clinical diagnosis and treatment assisted decision support, medical robots, Internet hospitals, intelligent medical equipment management, intelligent hospitals, intelligent public health services, etc.
Although medical technology develops rapidly in the scope of medical equipment in China, because high-end diagnosis and treatment equipment such as optical instruments, color ultrasound, X-ray fault checking instrument, implant products and so on are still controlled by foreign enterprises, mainly relying on imports, therefore, medical technology whether from the perspective of software or hardware, there is still to be a breakthrough.
The expansion of medical market demand presents the characteristics of high investment, high technology and high risk, but also has the consumption attribute of weak cycle.
In this regard, the government will implement major science and technology projects and national key research and development plans, organize public science and technology activities to support the development of the health industry, such as basic frontier research, public benefit research and research on major generic key technologies, promote the construction of major national infrastructure for translational medicine, and promote the construction of national clinical medical research centers.
On the one hand, we will promote innovation in improving the quality of drugs and medical devices. To give priority to the review and approval of new drugs and drugs for rare diseases urgently needed in clinic. We will revise standards for medical devices and improve the standard adoption rate of international standards for medical devices. We will promote the application and demonstration of innovative products of high-performance medical devices, and intensify the promotion.
On the other hand, the research and transformation of key technologies such as next-generation gene sequencing, tumor immunotherapy, stem cell and regenerative medicine, and biomedical big data analysis should continue to be accelerated, and enterprises should be supported to promote wearable, portable, non-contact health information collection intelligent health management, sports and fitness and other electronic products.