Improved Healthcare Access in Low-resource Regions: A Review of Technological Solutions

by   Bishal Lamichhane, et al.

Technological advancements have led to significant improvements in healthcare for prevention, diagnosis, treatments, and care. While resourceful regions can capitalize on state-of-the-art healthcare technologies, there might be barriers and delays in technology-enabled healthcare availability for a low-resource region. Unique innovations guided by the constraints of low-resource regions are required to truly make healthcare technologies ubiquitous and achieve the goal of "healthcare for all". In this review, we identified several research and development works that have investigated technology-based healthcare innovations targeted at low-resource regions. We found three main pillars of work towards this end: low-cost hardware for the affordability of medical devices, use of information and communication technology (ICT) tools for scalability and operational efficiencies in healthcare services, and mobile health solutions. Several emerging technologies are also promising for healthcare in low-resource regions, such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT), and blockchain technology. We discuss these emerging technologies too in this review.


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