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Published on March 08, 2022

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Infographic: 3 Trends to Track in Health Care

Your health care should never stand still. It’s always evolving with science, new technology and experience.

There’s a lot going on in areas of care you may need to use sometime in the future. We’ve compiled a list of trends in health care that are changing the industry.

Cancer Genomics

The sequencing of the human genome created a wave of opportunities. One area was in cancer treatment. Today, we can analyze the genomics of a tumor to define what treatment best fits for that type of cancer.

“In simple terms, precision oncology is determining which molecular changes are driving the growth of the tumor and matching a treatment to it, sequencing your solid tumor to identify how best to treat your cancer,” said Casey Williams, PharmD, Chief Scientific Officer and Executive Director of Cancer Research at Avera. “Presently, we’re expanding access to genomic testing so we can help more cancer patients this way, earlier in the disease process.”

This includes partnerships to create predictive models that can help Avera providers improve prevention, detection and treatments of patients.

On the treatment side, advancement in immunotherapy continues. This type of treatment wakes up the immune system to fight cancer. An area of immunotherapy called cellular therapy uses engineered or altered cells to use the immune system to fight certain types cancers. Avera is involved in several clinical trials and continues to expand its capabilities.

Care in Your Home

The COVID-19 pandemic was an opportunity for many health systems to evolve their home care programs quickly and Avera was no different.

Bringing care into the home isn’t easy when patients are more seriously ill. But as health systems sought to keep patients at home to take pressure off full hospitals, it became a necessity.

Avera@Home was already a leader in home health care, which allowed us to quickly pivot to create a COVID-19 home monitoring program.

During the pandemic up to 1,400 patients were being monitored at any given time. More than 8,400 patients with COVID were treated and monitored at home between March 1, 2020, and March 1, 2022.This included patients using oxygen, children and pregnant women.

Avera continues to expand uses for home care through the lessons learned. Recent efforts include helping expecting mothers at risk for gestational diabetes through home care and virtual visits.

    Meeting You Where You Are

    Avera was an early innovator in telemedicine and created a world-recognized telemedicine program. Our virtual services continue to evolve and we continue to offer these specialized virtual care options to our patients to decrease time and money spent on travel.

    But access is about more than virtual care. Sometimes it’s about being there to listen. This most prominent in areas where people can’t always wait to talk to a provider: during a mental health crisis or cancer treatment.

    Our 24/7 Cancer Navigation Center allows cancer patients and caregivers to call with questions or symptoms for guidance. People can also call our mental health services 24/7 as well at 1-800-691-4336. We’re also opening a 24/7 Behavioral Health Urgent Care Center in Sioux Falls for people to seek help during crisis situations.

      See what else is happening at Avera.org/Forward

      This infographic is a snapshot of how new ideas and research at Avera are moving health forward.

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