With the advent of modern technology, concerns have been raised regarding the proper utilization and implementation of these tools. This theoretical research aims to explore the challenges entrepreneurs face while implementing advanced biomedical technology in healthcare sectors in the UK. Healthcare is considered one of the primary sectors that determine a country's overall development. People's lives are directly related to it, which gives it a key position for reforms and innovations. The development of digital technology has helped various sectors in improving their spread of information. This is important in the healthcare sector because the results can be on a massive level, such as population(McArthur et al., 2016, pp. 36). The reforms in this sector are changing due to the interest of entrepreneurs in this field.
The increased demand for high-quality health services has encouraged people all over the world to invest in new technologies that could help the process of diagnosis and treatment of different diseases and ailments. In the past, investors have been more interested in commercial activities such as the food and retail industry. However, the capacity in the conventional areas has caused people to invest their time and resources in the healthcare sector (Campbell et al., 2016, p. 4). There have been some reservations due to the accuracy of activities involved in the health sector because risk cannot be taken when it comes to a patient’s health. However, the development of technology and digitalization in various procedures has brought great exactness to the work of the health sector.
In this era of digitalization, people want their work done fastest and most efficiently. Moreover, globalization through Internet technology has enabled people to become highly aware of the modern tools and systems used in different professions (Batterham et al., 2016, pp. 3). Many studies have discussed the implementation of biomedical technology in healthcare with the aid of other technological innovations (Gordon and Catalini, 2018; Luo et al., 2016; Qi et al., 2017; Ok et al., 2015). Most studies discuss the implementation of advanced biomedical technology within the healthcare sector (Darwish, Ismail Sayed, and Ella Hassanien, 2019; Miller et al., 2017; Chen and Huang, 2018). However, not much literature is found when searching for the challenges entrepreneurs face while implementing advanced biomedical technology within the healthcare sector. Additionally, not much literature is found that discusses the challenges faced by entrepreneurs planning to implement such technology within the UK healthcare sector. Thus, this study aims to address this problem faced by entrepreneurs who enter the health sector and have difficulty implementing modern techniques in this profession within the UK healthcare sector.
This study mainly evaluates the challenges entrepreneurs face during the implementation of advanced biomedical technologies within the healthcare sector of the UK. The researcher has identified the following objectives:
The rationale of this study is to find out the issues faced by businessmen who invest in innovative technologies for healthcare. In the past, several studies have been conducted to analyze the problems in healthcare systems, including human resource management procedures, digitalization, and relevant areas (Schopman, Kalshoven, and Boon, 2017; Iivari et al., 2017; Manogaran et al., 2017). However, not many studies discuss the numerous challenges entrepreneurs face while implementing advanced biomedical technology especially when they plan to invest in these healthcare technologies. The actual problems faced by entrepreneurs in bringing advanced biomedical technologies into healthcare within the UK are not yet observed by researchers in detail (Thongpravati et al., 2016, pp. 1222). Therefore, the purpose of this study is to evaluate the challenges faced while implementing advanced biomedical healthcare technology within the UK healthcare sector.
Technological advances have highly influenced the Healthcare sector in recent years. People from different professions develop efficient systems for better health facilities (Wilden et al., 2018, p. 51). People face specific problems while bringing these biomedical technologies for public use. This literature review shall start with analysing entrepreneurs in healthcare, and then the innovative technologies being used in this sector will be studied. This will be followed by the challenges faced in implementing such advanced procedures in healthcare and the relevant theoretical framework in the area. Finally, the chapter summary shall conclude this chapter.
The introduction of advanced biomedical equipment has received a mixed response from professionals in this field and the public. Hospitals find it difficult to adopt such technologies because they have to shift their systems entirely to welcome the new tools.
In Norway, the adoption of telehealth consultations was less than 1% despite high encouragement from the state towards it (Greenhalgh et al., 2017, p. 156). According to Walia et al. (2019, p. 1238), there are several barriers to implementing new technologies in health centres because the corresponding laws must be observed. Moreover, the high complexity of inventions naturally makes them tough to use in common facilities. One cannot guarantee the correct working of a device unless it is tested hundreds of times, and in the case of health equipment, the quality assurance has to be greater than usual. Consequently, the biomedical technology invented today shall have to wait years before it reaches widespread use (Setiawan, 2019, p. 847). This gap in the time frame then introduces more inventions, so there is always a need for upscale health facilities worldwide.
In the study of Salminen et al. (2014, p.456), entrepreneurship is a relatively old concept regarding healthcare. There was important work done during World War Two by individuals who came to the rescue of injured people. The motivation to serve humanity is an underlying reason why a significant number of people wish to enter this field. However, the subdued pace of innovation in healthcare is attributed to the global market in healthcare (Naughton and Foss, 2019, p. 55-64). Financial factors cause a significant hindrance to advanced biomedical technologies being used in widespread health facilities. Some individuals have developed electronic health services independently, but they cannot be considered effective in every region of the world.
Thongpravati et al. (2016, p.1222) highlight that Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) have been used in healthcare and have been observed to have massive potential in several domains in the area. From conventional administrative work to highly advanced surgical treatments, advanced biomedical technologies can play their role in making this sector more efficient. The development of electronic healthcare platforms has enabled users to access doctors' services at any time and location in the world. Modern applications can monitor heart rate, blood pressure, sugar level, and many other things which are essential for a routine health check-up (Thongpravati et al., 2016, p. 1222). The recent development in the Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) is still finding their way into the health sector on a large scale (Aceto et al., 2018, p. 125). However, the use of advanced biomedical machines for treatment and microelectronic devices such as sensors and implanted devices used in surgery are widely used worldwide. The vast number of intelligent devices allows a non-medical person to check and diagnose the majority of problems related to healthcare which is a significant indicator of the level of innovation in this profession (Batterham et al., 2016, p. 4).
The study of Wharton et al. (2017, p. 367) stated that the development of advanced medical technologies is not so simple to implement on a large scale due to several issues involved in it. The main reason is that patients are usually sensitive to their health and are not willing to take risks. The modern systems that can be operated without a person are mostly not trusted because of the absence of human beings controlling them (Wherton et al., 2017, p. 367). Another issue is the cost connected with advanced machinery for healthcare. The tools used in one region may not be possible in others due to administrative issues such as maintenance, trained staff, availability of resources, and social pressures (Davenport et al., 2018, p. 259). Hospitals in Eastern countries find it challenging to purchase and operate advanced medical equipment because people cannot afford such high treatment costs. Additionally, it is not easy to adopt new systems because people want real-world examples of patients who have been tested and cured with such biomedical tools, which is not possible if it is introduced recently (Greenhalgh et al., 2017, p. 367).
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The challenges in implementing modern biomedical systems in the healthcare sector are highly varied and complex. While the potential benefit of such tools cannot be ignored, their utilization is still a question mark for many countries worldwide. People are not willing to spend a fortune on their treatments even if they have the resources because several technologies are new and have not been tested. In this review, the researcher has studied the entrepreneurs in this profession, the range of innovative technologies being used, the challenges in their implementation, and the theoretical framework related to this study. All of the data is taken from resources that lie in the past six years to keep the analysis up to date.
From the developed research objectives, it can be easily identified that the research philosophy of positivism can help explore different challenges experienced by the healthcare sector's entrepreneurs in implementing advanced biomedical technologies. Moreover, the positivist research philosophy helped the researchers deduce the solutions for overcoming the experienced challenges by the healthcare entrepreneurs of the UK. Further, the researchers used the qualitative method of research so that the study may find a descriptive perception of participants related to the research topic. Moreover, the researchers used the primary data collection method.
This primary data collection technique is an interview conducted with six participants, including three entrepreneurs and three employees working at medical healthcare who own their healthcare institute or are affiliated with any other major healthcare banner. The data was collected through interviews where the themes would be made according to the response of the participants. This type of analysis helped the researcher conduct a thematic analysis based on the brief perception of participants on the phenomena. Contrarily, thematic analysis of the collected data enabled the researchers to identify the brief perception of the challenges faced by healthcare entrepreneurs in implementing bio-medical technologies in general healthcare practices. The time horizon for the selected research was based on the longitudinal time horizon, so the study can remain valid for future researchers who plan to research the same topic in the future time.
Entrepreneurs are the ones that see the capacity for investment or future growth in any industry. n terms of medical sectors, entrepreneurs represent innovation, as they bring innovative ideas in front of top management to utilize competencies and resources for taking the organization towards growth (Naughton and Foss, 2019, pp. 55-64). Certain no of the statements from an entrepreneur indicated that:
“I have been an entrepreneur for around eight years, I solely bring creativity to the healthcare sector via investing in modern technology. My particular focus has been on biomedical technology as this technology plays a prominent role in minimizing the operational cost of healthcare institutions. It minimizes the pressure from patients related to their cost of healthcare, that gives me satisfaction. Then medical institution incurs a low cost, it leads to profitability and this biomedical technology such as laser surgery and prosthetics improve the quality of treatment hence attracting more patients which also results in more profit. o I try my best to persuade the usage of advanced biomedical technology at healthcare institution via investing in them to improve the quality of healthcare”.
By analyzing the above statement, it can be evaluated that entrepreneurs invest in advanced biomedical technology to improve healthcare quality and bring innovation to the treatment process to attract patients. Moreover, applying advanced biomedical technology increases the profitability of healthcare institutions by reducing operational costs.
According to the study by Aceto et al. (2018, p. 125) in literature, the employee working at a healthcare institution aims to improve healthcare quality by suggesting the usage of advanced biomedical technology. However, one of the themes indicated that:
“As an employee, I believe that usage of advanced biomedical technology brings preciseness in the treatment process. From my experience, there is considerable surgery that humans cannot perform, but with the use of robotic surgery, those surgeries have now become possible. Thus, I, as employee make sure that these technologies are employed in our healthcare institution to make the impossible treatments possible”.
By analyzing the above statement, it can be evaluated that the employee works to improve the medical treatment process by recommending the use of advanced biomedical technology for critical surgeries.
The integration of technology with medicine brings convenience to the lives of patients and healthcare professionals. One of the studies in the literature highlighted that biomedical technology allows healthcare professionals to do robotic surgery without their presence at a hospital and makes minimally invasive procedures safe. However, an employee working at one of the healthcare institutions in the UK said that:
“Currently, our hospital is initiating robotic surgeries that result in less scarring and minimization of recovery time for the patients. Also, with the help of biomedical technology, our hospital can diagnose the disease on a cellular level that can be managed via the production of antibodies. Moreover, vaccines have been made to treat diseases like malaria, polio, and MMR.
By examining the above response, it has been found that UK medical institutions are currently using robotic surgery via the utilization of advanced biomedical technology. Furthermore, the orthopaedic internal fixation device is being used to repair broken bones without the presence of a human surgeon.
The prominent challenge entrepreneurs face in the UK in encouraging the use of advanced biomedical technology in the healthcare sector is the government's involvement and lack of funding (Wherton et al. 2017, p. 368). Additionally, the study by Greenhalgh et al. (2017, p. 369) regarded that employees tend to face difficulty in using advanced biomedical technology, which stops healthcare institutions from utilizing advanced biomedical technology. Although, one of the respondents stated:
“One of the issues that I always encounter is lack of accessibility in research and development of biomedical technology. I, as an entrepreneur believes, that biomedical technology would replace the service of humans and substantially increase the quality of healthcare. However, research on these technology demands extensive investment that does not provide profit. Hence, huge entrepreneurs prevent investing in such projects.”
By analyzing the above statement, it has been interpreted that lack of accessibility minimizes the drive of entrepreneurs to invest in this biomedical technology. Moreover, the limited accessibility limits employees in learning the implication of such biomedical technology.
The results indicated that entrepreneurs and employees play an essential role in promoting the use of biomedical technology in the healthcare sector of the UK. The research explores the level of challenges that are being faced by entrepreneurs in healthcare for delivering and using bio-medical technologies in their healthcare centres. This is because every challenge faced by healthcare entrepreneurs differs from one another. Gordon and Catalini (2018) have identified that with the use of biomedical technologies in the healthcare sector, entrepreneurs can easily access big data analytics for their patients and quickly develop good healthcare practices supportive of potential growth. It was also discussed by Qi et al. (2017) mentioned that the challenges of using bio-medical technologies can be mitigated when entrepreneurs start their business operations after consulting the proper regulating authorities and the right technology vendors. This consultancy practice can make the entrepreneurs familiar with the working of bio-medical technologies that only benefit their business after being successfully implied. It was also discussed by Ok et al. (2015) that the determination of drug usage for the patients with the bio-medical technology data would ease the functions of entrepreneurs in running their healthcare institutes. It is because the data of the patients and other physician credentials will be safeguarded from theft through an effective electronic security system. The use challenge of the increase in business costs can be removed when the entrepreneurs will think about the successful long-term operations of their healthcare institute.
The current research can be concluded easily by acknowledging that every entrepreneur in the healthcare industry experiences different challenges in using bio-medical technologies to support their operations effectively. It was discussed in the literature that many studies provide benefits of using biomedical technologies in the healthcare sector. Still, they fail to explain how to mitigate the experienced challenges by entrepreneurs. The current research uses the positivist research philosophy that helps the recent study collect the primary data through interviews and develop the research results using thematic analysis.
The developed results explain that every challenge of implementing bio-medical technology in healthcare is essential for finding a remedy. This is because there is no significant relationship between the challenges discussed, so the remedies must be developed with the establishment of workable strategies. In the discussion part, it was discussed that entrepreneurs should make effective strategies for implementing the technologies so that the level of impact received from challenges can be minimized effectively. It was further discussed that the entrepreneurs should have met the technology development authorities and the previous members of the healthcare sector to identify the right way to avoid the challenges while implementing the bio-medical technologies.
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What role do you have as an entrepreneur or an employee at your healthcare institutions?
What challenges do you face in implementing advanced biomedical technology in your healthcare institutions?
What kind of advanced biomedical technology is currently being used at your healthcare
How these advanced biomedical technologies are providing benefits to your healthcare
How do you think you can counter the restrictions being imposed on employing advanced
biomedical technology at your healthcare institutions?
Do you think your healthcare institution would drive toward growth in the future by employing
advanced biomedical technology?