This paper highlights several expected future trends in science and technology and their implications on health care in 2015. Part of the Policy futures for UK health - Pathfinder Technical Series.
On the one hand, a greater concentration of specialist expertise and equipment in a smaller number of larger centres is expected within health care services.
At the same time, it will be possible to treat more conditions locally in small centres, and there is likely to be an increase in self-diagnosis and self-treatment or home care. Science and technology hold great promise for health and health care services in 2015 increasing sophistication of medicine, improved potential for screening and treating serious conditions, and further reductions in hospital length of stay.
Policy makers have to work with the growing demands and expectations of the public, the need to evaluate new health care technologies, and ensure that the health infrastructure and workforce can cope with developments.
Robert G (1999) Science and technology. Trends and issues forward to 2015: Implications for health care. Briefing. Policy futures for UK health - Pathfinder Technical Series No 4. Nuffield Trust.