A new year often brings new ideas after we’ve learned a thing or two from the past. COVID-19 has certainly adjusted our comfort levels and forced a new perspective in many different areas of our lives. Healthcare is certainly one of these key focus areas. As we embark on a new journey, we can expect to see healthcare trends in the areas of advanced technology, telemedicine, and an increased focus on mental health issues. Bloom, along with Momentum Health4Me, encourages a healthy living lifestyle, which is the reason we’ve included a list of healthy resolutions to embrace in 2022.
Healthcare trends in 2022
1. Focus on mental health. Mental has become a key area of concern and focus ever since COVID-19’s impact reverberated across the globe. Since then, many insights have been acquired about mental health challenges and their effects on one’s health and ability to function in a personal, social and professional capacity. Stress and poorly managed coping mechanisms resulted in substance abuse, overeating and depression, which had a negative impact on people’s physical well-being. Many employers now offer mental health resources and specialised support to workers, especially those who are working remotely or living in isolation. The healthcare trend of providing access to quality mental healthcare will continue in 2022.
2. Healthcare goes virtual with digital technology. Social distancing and remote working has revolutionised the delivery care model. Many healthcare practitioners, GPs and specialists are now offering virtual care approaches instead of in-person appointments. Some medical specialities are even expected to shift permanently to this new virtual model, which makes it more convenient and safer for both the practitioner and the patient. Virtual health or ‘telehealth’ is a healthcare trend that is expected to drive more dialogue and will address issues of equity and accessibility to quality healthcare services.
Bloom currently works with the Momentum Health4Me Hello Doctor benefit. Hello Doctor is a free medical healthcare teleservice that is available for Health4Me members using a telephonic service instead of taking time off with an in-room appointment. Users can get medical advice from qualified doctors and healthcare professionals in real-time without having to attend a physical consultation. This has proven safer during South Africa’s lockdown restrictions. The way it works is twofold: a user can either phone and request a doctor callback or send an SMS for a text answer. The turnaround time for a response is about one hour.
3. Wearable medical devices are one of the major healthcare trends and will become even more popular. Advances in artificial intelligence and big data are helping people monitor their medical health using wearable devices, usually on one’s wrist in the form of a smartwatch.
Deloitte predicts that approximately 320 million health and wellness devices will ship globally in 2022. These devices started off with appeal in the fitness industry, helping people lose weight, check their heart rate and beat their personal best. However, as these devices have become increasingly sophisticated, people will now be able to monitor chronic conditions, like heart problems, or even detect disease symptoms.
6 New Year resolutions to make for better health
- Watch your diet. Nothing will have as great an impact on your physical and mental health as your diet. Evaluate your current eating patterns and put a stop to unhealthy habits. Include all the major food groups in your diet, including fresh fruit, vegetables, grains, lean protein and dairy. Sometimes the hype is worth it. The following foods have been identified as superfoods, which means they have exceptional nutritional value:
- Leafy greens (spinach, kale)
- Berries (strawberries, blueberries)
- Green tea
- Legumes or pulses
- Nuts and seeds
- Olive oil
- Turmeric (curcumin)
- Sweet potatoes
- Increase your water intake. Experts agree that you should be drinking at least two litres of water per day. Water helps our bodies in many ways, like aiding with digestion, maintaining blood pressure levels, flushing bacteria from one’s bladder and stabilising your heart rate. So, think twice when you’re reaching for a soda or energy drink when you’re feeling thirsty. Water will always be the healthier option.
- Start a regular exercise plan. Physical activity is good for the mind, body and soul. A regular exercise routine can help you lose (or maintain) weight, improve your mental state of mind, quality of sleep and stress levels. 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise is recommended each week.
- Quit smoking. Smoking causes serious long-term health complications. This lifestyle habit has been linked to certain types of cancer, respiratory problems, cardiovascular disease, infertility, premature ageing and sexual health disorders. Take a look at the various resources you can use to help you quit.
- Add fibre to your diet. Fibre is a great way to improve your overall constitution. Not only does it help maintain regular bowel health, but it also lowers cholesterol levels and blood sugar. Plus, it adds healthy gut bacteria to your system. Aim to eat at least 30 grams of fibre each day, which you can source from foods like fruit, vegetables, whole grains and legumes.
- Quality sleep is a must. If you’ve been pulling all-nighters in 2021, it’s time to stop and concentrate on getting quality sleep. Your body needs seven to nine hours of uninterrupted sleep in order to recharge itself. Poor sleep quality is linked to mental health issues, like depression and anxiety, as well as physical ailments like high blood pressure. Commit to bedtime and avoid caffeine after 7 pm. Likewise, avoid the temptation to look at your phone before going to sleep as the blue light will interfere with your sleep cycle.
New year health insurance plan options from Momentum Health4Me
Bloom encourages you to prioritise your health in 2022, which is why we work with a network of approved doctors and GPs. Cutting edge healthcare trends are set to make our lives safer and even more manageable in the future. Momentum Health4Me insurance plans are available in various options, including the Health4Me Gold, Silver and Bronze options. Find a Get affordable medical insurance cover with Bloom that will ensure you that access to quality healthcare if you need it. Contact our offices to speak to a trained consultant or make an appointment with a broker to discuss your health insurance option plans.
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You understand and acknowledge that all users of the Bloom website are responsible for their own medical care, treatment, and oversight. All content provided on the website, is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Neither is it intended to be a substitute for an independent professional medical opinion, judgement, diagnosis or treatment.