Augmented Reality is the enhanced technological concept created to inlay the digital information on a device. It incorporates digital information with the user’s environment in real time. With the help of technology, it provides a composite view by providing a computer generated image on the user’s view of the real world.
AR as a system, has 3 basic essential features-
- Amalgam of real and virtual worlds
- Real-time interaction
- 3D registration of virtual and real objects.
When compared to the artificial environment created by virtual reality (VR), augmented reality overlays new information on the existing environment. An AR display environment strengthens a user’s real world experience with the power of computer generated display, sound, text and effects. AR has applications in medical training, education, fitness management, real estate, etc.
AR & VR are emerging technologies which are making their place in the pharma industry from the last few years. Specifically, AR is really beginning to make its mark. The role of AR in healthcare is expected to increase.
Unique features of AR which make it stand apart from the rest of the technologies are-
- Users do not lose touch with reality
- Puts information in view as soon as possible
These features empower AR to become a driving force in the future of healthcare medicine.
According to a recent report by Market Research Future (MRFR), augmented reality in healthcare market is predicted to reach USD 1.32 billion at a 23% CAGR between 2017-2023.
Benefits of AR in healthcare industry
1. Provides consumer education
Various industries give a lot of importance to visual simulation, so the healthcare industry leaves no chance to make itself a part of this lot/group. Augmented reality permits pharmaceutical companies to boost patient education by visual presentation of complex products. Whatever maybe the age of the patient, AR enhances patient engagement and education.
Augmented Reality acts as a bridge between the consumer and the medicine by educating them how to take a specific medicine while visually displaying its benefits. This helps in preventing small safety issues.
2. Patient friendly tool
Patients can easily brief about their symptoms through Augmented reality. Sometimes patients can’t really share the symptoms they are facing or maybe they may overreact in a few cases, It is said, in ophthalmology, augmented reality might be of great help for patient education.
For instance, EyeDecide medical app helps in camera display simulation of patients’ condition. This app demonstration can impact patients’ experience on their lifestyle on health and could motivate people to make positive changes. This helps patients understand their symptoms and their current medical state.
3. Provide innovative drug infromation
Have you ever been so enthusiastic to know more about the drug ??
But lost that interest after going through boring descriptions. Don’t worry !
Augmented Reality is here to bring in change.
Augmented reality allows the consumers to get through the 3D visual presentation of drug benefits and how it works, rather than reading the boring description on bottles. With Augmented Reality equipment, lab workers can monitor their experiments. In Pharmaceutical factories, workers can work without placing their hands on training, as the device instructs what, when and how to do.
4. Facilitates Sales
Augmented reality’s one of the biggest advantages is it allows you to clearly imagine, demonstrate and visualise complicated concepts. The competitive atmosphere among the drug maker and provider indicates even a small advantage can result in big gains.
The use of AR is highly beneficial for those representatives who are in want of a physician’s’ attention. Showing the benefits of a drug and its function through a visual 3D has more impact than a flat picture on a paper.
5. Supports Surgeons
During surgeries everyone and in particular doctors and patients are aware that accuracy and precision is of utmost importance. Augmented Reality helps surgeons work more efficiently and effectively. Whether a very minimal invasive procedure or locating a tumor, Augmented Reality healthcare apps help in treating patients effortlessly and can save their lives.
The power of AR allows both trainees and practising physicians to look at the data and educational information without distracting themselves from the difficult task at hand. AR helps practitioners in understanding how well a procedure can be done or how to administer a new treatment. AR help to support and educate healthcare practitioners will push further the boundaries as technologists and the pharma industry collaborates.
6. Improves the quality of treatment
Augmented reality improves the quality of treatment they receive from healthcare providers. Previously a surgeon needed a monitor to display images and vital statistics through an endoscopic camera. But now. AR surgeons wear smart glasses for a process and stay focused with the task at hand. This helps in avoiding minimalist mistakes and reduces the task of multitasking.
In the near future, AR matures and becomes more affordable and user friendly. Many life sciences companies should consider AR as an important tool to communicate, educate and engage HealthCare Practitioners (HCP) and patients on innovations which indirectly improve the outcomes.
Using AR brands and content providers can create a better field force for HCP engagement. AR gives opportunities for HCPs to be more illustrative while explaining treatments to patients. AR makes both patients and healthcare professionals’ lives easier. It pushes the boundaries of technology and creates more space for right innovative partners, which results in many more interesting AR cases. This way the industry grows into a better one.
Sameer Mehta is a blogger and entrepreneur and writes on technology and lifestyle related topics. He has more than 15 years of experience across technology, consulting and marketing. He has written for Entrepreneur, West Agile Labs, Exegy Consulting, Jewellerista, etc.