Need a perfect paper? Place your first order and save 5% with this code:   SAVE5NOW

Benefits and Downsides of Using Digital Health Technologies


Digital health is using technology to assist and improve healthcare services in various areas, such as telemedicine, wearable medical devices, electronic health records, and mobile health applications. The healthcare industry has undergone a transformation thanks to the rising trends and breakthroughs in digital health technology, which present new opportunities to enhance patient care and outcomes, widen access to healthcare, streamline administrative processes, cut costs, train healthcare professionals and empower effective communication between patients and healthcare providers (Lupton 2018). However, healthcare technologies have certain negatives, such as data security and privacy problems, the potential for health to increase already-existing health disparities, and issues with patient-provider communication and trust. This essay will briefly overview digital health technologies and analyze the benefits and downsides of using these technologies. This article will further discuss the ethical concerns of technological advances in healthcare and present specific instances and studies to illustrate how digital innovations are employed in practice in the healthcare sector. It does this by drawing upon an array of critical and collaboratively viewpoints from readings.

Examples and case studies of digital health technologies

The healthcare sector is transforming due to the quick evolution of digital health technologies. They present a variety of chances to raise the effectiveness and calibre of medical therapy. Electronic health records are among these technologies. Healthcare professionals may swiftly and readily obtain the medical history of a patient, test laboratory results, and other crucial information using the EHRs. Innovative health devices also include wearables like smartwatches and fitness trackers. These tools can track a person’s heart rate, sleeping habits, and physical activity, among other elements of their health (Collier and Randolph, 2015). People can use this knowledge to make better-informed decisions regarding their health and way of life. Using video conferencing, conversations, and other electronic communication technologies in telemedicine enables healthcare professionals to assess and treat patients remotely. Telemedicine is a very applicable technology for patients with mobility challenges or chronic diseases that call for frequent check-ins and in rural locations with limited access to healthcare. Also, thousands of patient-accessible mobile health apps are available that cover anything from managing chronic diseases to mental health. These apps offer patients individualized guidance and support, as well as the ability for medical professionals to remotely check in on their patients. Finally, the production of medical equipment and prosthetics is being revolutionized by 3D printing (Ellerbeck 2023). This technique can be utilized in surgery to construct patient-specific replicas of organs and tissues, as well as to create prosthetics and implants that are custom-fit.

Teladoc Health is one of the well-known virtual healthcare organizations. The business provides patients from all over the world with digital health services. Patients can communicate in real-time via its telemedicine platform with doctors and other medical specialists without making an in-person visit (Mulia 2022). Teladoc Health systems provide remote monitoring, virtual consultations, and virtual therapy sessions.

Opportunities for digital health technologies

Digital health technologies have improved access to healthcare services. The availability of technologies has made patients access health services like adult and community nursing, preventive services, child health services and sexual health. The availability of these technologies and their vast networking enable patients to remotely access offers provided by their caregivers, improving healthcare delivery (WHO, 2018). Remote patient monitoring, patient portals and cloud computing innovations are critical health technologies that allow easy access to services for patients. Patient health portals make it faster for patients to book and schedule appointments with their caregivers. Although these portals differ from one facility to another, their primary roles are to manage patients’ medications and prescriptions from their pharmacists, check test results from laboratories, make payments, engage in collaborative communication with their caregivers and learn more about their health and treatments in a more detailed way.

Also, digital healthcare technologies effectively train healthcare professionals in their areas of specialization. From the beginning of the 21st century, online learning has increased to more than 900%. The medical sector and education have rapidly changed due to changing technologies. Technology innovations like simulations, virtual learning and e-learning have evolved as innovative strategies to facilitate effective, remote, flexible and learner-centred teaching approaches for medical professionals (Gathu, 2021). Additionally, digital learning tools are cost-effective in allowing practical discussions and trainee understanding, which leads to high learner satisfaction and engagement. Finally, mobile devices and software technologies enable medical learners to polish their knowledge of disease diagnoses, medical management and calculations, patient health data and tracking health progress. In addition, digital health technologies streamline administrative processes in the medical sector. These technologies provide more efficient and effective ways of managing patients’ data and health records. Electronic Health Records help to minimize the time and resources required to handle paper-based data records and improve the accuracy, completeness and accessibility of patients’ data (Lupton, 2018). Digital health technologies like appointment scheduling and reminders automate patients’ scheduling and reduce workloads on administration, thus improving patient and healthcare providers’ adherence to their health plans.

Billing and claims management systems in healthcare automate billing and invoicing in health facilities reducing errors and delays and improving the efficiency of financial transactions. Healthcare technologies also increase patient outcomes. Better patient results are achieved by providing more accurate and timely diagnoses and personalized treatment options. For instance, to create more individualized treatment strategies, healthcare professionals can uncover genetic susceptibility for specific diseases with genomic testing (Chamberlain and Lyons 2022). With health technologies, patients can readily access their clinical records, which helps them be more educated about their medical conditions and encourage them to participate in shared decision-making with themselves and their healthcare providers (Ziebland and Wyke, 2012). Finally, health technologies enhance research capabilities in the medical field. These technologies provide fresh avenues for research and innovation. Technology developments have had a significant innovation in drug and antibiotic discovery, radiotherapy and imaging, diagnostics management and vaccine development and discovery. For instance, big data analytics can help medical researchers to highlight patterns and trends in health data, leading to new insights and discoveries (Chamberlain and Lyons 2022). Also, artificial intelligence in healthcare detects and diagnoses diseases more timely than conventional methods (Ellerbeck 2023). For example, AI can identify cancerous breast tissues, making mammograms be seen with high precision and faster, minimizing the need for biopsies. In conclusion, health technologies can help the healthcare industry by increasing efficiency, improving patient outcomes, improving healthcare education and training for healthcare workers, and empowering patients. They also improve research capacities, and patient and healthcare giver satisfaction.

Drawbacks of digital health technologies

Even while there are a lot of potential advantages to digital health technologies, some disadvantages must be taken into account. Concerns about privacy and security are a couple of the significant downsides of digital health technologies. Collecting, storing, and exchanging private patient data are all aspects of digital health technologies. These procedures give rise to privacy and security concerns because this information may be exposed to data breaches, theft and hacking. Also, sharing their sensitive data and experiences on the internet has resulted in the invasion of privacy, cyberbullying and exposure of offensive images and messages. Inconsistent facts and testimonies from patients with diverse backgrounds and knowledge might lead to uncertainty, false reassurance, and worry, impairing patients’ ability to make better, more innate decisions (Ziebland and Wyke, 2012). To establish more robust relationships between patients and their caregivers, help patients feel supported, and help patients find valuable and inspiring information about their medical problems, material supplied online must be reliable and truthful.

In addition, digital health technologies lead to fragmentation and standardization. Healthcare delivery may become fragmented and non-standardized due to the spread of digital health technologies. Various healthcare organizations and providers frequently use different digital health technologies, creating an environment where they operate in isolation (Marent and Henwood, 2022). As a result, patients may have to employ several different technologies and platforms to get the care they require, leading to a decentralized healthcare delivery system. Furthermore, other technologies could adhere to various standards and protocols, which makes it challenging to transfer data and information between multiple systems. Also, a lack of consistency in healthcare delivery may result from the usage of digital health technologies. Different technologies can be utilized to gather and retain data, which may lead to discrepancies and errors in patient records. As a result, there may be hazards to patient safety and misunderstanding and inefficiencies in healthcare delivery.

Also, using digital health technologies leads to a loss of human touch. It reduces the face-to-face interaction between healthcare givers and patients, potentially leading to a loss of empathy in healthcare. Patients may have less need to physically visit a healthcare professional for routine check-ups or consultations as telemedicine and virtual consultations become more prevalent (Lupton 2018). The level of personal involvement and interaction between healthcare practitioners and patients may decline as a result, even though it may be more accessible for patients. This can harm patients who need more outstanding psychological assistance or have complicated medical problems.

Additionally, using technology for digital health may save the time medical professionals spend with patients during in-person visits. For example, clinicians might rely increasingly on electronic medical records and other technological methods to gather patient data, resulting in less time spent interacting with patients directly. Digital technologies make it more difficult for patients and healthcare professionals to establish connections and foster confidence (Chamberlain and Lyons 2022). Direct communication and decision-making between healthcare personnel and patients may also be reduced due to increased reliance on analytics and decision-support technologies.

Using digital health technologies leads to issues related to accessibility, inequality and technology reliability and maintenance. The utilization of digital health technologies is predicated on the notion that all patients will have access to the required tools, programs, and internet connections (Van Dijck and Poell, 2016).For people who might otherwise find it difficult to obtain conventional medical services, such as those who live in remote places or have mobility problems, electronic health platforms have a chance to expand access to healthcare. However, because they demand the utilization of technology and digital literacy abilities, online health platforms risk developing brand-new types of inequity. While some patient populations, such as the elderly or those with lesser skills and education, may not benefit from these platforms, online health portals may be more effective in serving other patient populations, such as the younger and more educated. Instead of narrowing current healthcare inequities, this may increase them. Finally, digital health technologies need frequent maintenance and updates to maintain their functionality and security. In addition to the potential expense and effort involved, there is also a chance that the technology will malfunction (Lupton 2018). Dependence on digital health tools may cause healthcare professionals to lose knowledge and skills. For instance, healthcare providers may only be able to identify and manage patients with the help of digital technology if they rely primarily on these tools. Over-reliance can affect patient safety and result in declining the treatment standard.


The advancing trends and innovations in digital health technology have transformed the healthcare sector by opening up new possibilities for improving patient care and outcomes, expanding access to healthcare, streamlining administrative procedures, reducing costs, educating healthcare professionals, and enabling efficient communication between patients and healthcare providers. Healthcare technology can have certain drawbacks, too, including issues with data security and privacy, the potential to widen existing health disparities, and problems with patient-provider communication and trust. Clare rules and laws governing the collecting, using, and storing of health data must be established to address concerns about data privacy and security. This will guarantee the safety and protection of patient data. Clear guidelines must be selected for the monitoring and upkeep digital health technologies, and funds must be allocated for continual research and development to enhance their efficiency. Healthcare professionals, technology creators, governments, and patients will need to work together to overcome the problems with digital health technologies. We can make use of the potential of digital health technology to raise patient satisfaction and improve healthcare outcomes by working collaboratively to recognize and resolve these problems.

Reference list

Chamberlain, K. and Lyons, A.C. (2022) Routledge International Handbook of Critical Issues in health and illness. Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. Available at: (Accessed: April 21, 2023).

Collier, R. and Randolph, A. (2015) AISeL. Available at: (Accessed: April 21, 2023).

Ellerbeck, S. (2023) 5 innovations that are revolutionizing Global HealthcareWorld Economic Forum. Available at: (Accessed: April 21, 2023).

Gathu, C. (2021) How technology is Transforming Medical EducationBusiness Daily. Business Daily. Available at:,been%20revolutionary%20in%20medical%20training. (Accessed: April 21, 2023).

Lupton, D. (2018) “Introduction,” in Digital Health: Critical and cross-disciplinary Perspectives. Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. Available at: (Accessed: April 20, 2023).

Marent, B. and Henwood, F. (2022) “Digital Health: A sociomaterial approach,” Sociology of Health & Illness, 45(1), pp. 37–53. Available at:

Mulia, A.M. (2022) Teladoc Case StudyShare and Discover Knowledge on SlideShare. Available at: (Accessed: April 21, 2023).

Van Dijck, J. and Poell, T. (2016) “Understanding the promises and premises of online health platforms,” Big Data & Society, 3(1). Available at:

WHO (2018) World Health Organization. Available at: (Accessed: April 21, 2023).

Ziebland, S. and Wyke, S. (2012) “Health and illness in a connected world: How might sharing experiences on the internet affect people’s health?,” Milbank Quarterly, 90(2), pp. 219–249. Available at:


Don't have time to write this essay on your own?
Use our essay writing service and save your time. We guarantee high quality, on-time delivery and 100% confidentiality. All our papers are written from scratch according to your instructions and are plagiarism free.
Place an order

Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below:

Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Copy to clipboard
Need a plagiarism free essay written by an educator?
Order it today

Popular Essay Topics