One might think that technological advancements are only limited to the IT industry, but that is untrue. Applications of these technologies can be seen across fields, especially in the healthcare sector, where healthcare software testing plays a crucial role. Software development has become integral, from medical form filling to hospital administration systems and insurance claim settlements. And as we know, where there is software development, there has to be testing.
So, let’s understand the nuances involved in testing any healthcare-related software and look at how an AI-based tool can improve testing efficiency.
“In 2022, the total number of electronic prescriptions filled reached over 2.3 billion based on data from the country’s largest e-prescribing operator, Surescripts.” (source)
Use Cases of Technology in Healthcare
Healthcare applications leverage various technologies to enhance patient care, improve operational efficiency, and support medical research. Most prevalent technological concepts, like AI, ML, NLP, big data, and cloud computing, are already being implemented in this industry. Here is a brief overview:
Big Data: Large volumes of patient data are analyzed using big data, enabling healthcare providers to gain valuable insights and make data-driven decisions. This extensive data can be stored and accessed securely using cloud-based solutions. Cloud services provide scalability, flexibility, and accessible data sharing across healthcare organizations.
Robotic Process Automation (RPA): Technology can streamline administrative processes and free human resources for more critical tasks. Robotic Process Automation or RPA is used in such scenarios to automate repetitive and rule-based tasks in healthcare, such as patient appointment scheduling, claims processing, and billing. Artificial intelligence, or AI, is in vogue across sectors to analyze medical images and develop virtual assistants to interact with patients.
Natural Language Processing (NLP): It is used in health care for tasks like extracting information from clinical notes or transcribing medical dictations. Machine Learning or ML algorithms train healthcare software to learn from data and improve performance without being explicitly programmed.
Internet of Things (IoT): These devices are increasingly being used to collect real-time patient data and enable remote monitoring. For instance, wearable devices can track vital signs, glucose levels, and physical activity, providing valuable information to healthcare providers.
“According to Insider Intelligence research, the number of health and fitness app users will grow to 91.3 million through 2023, up from 88.5 million in 2022.” (source)
How to Test a Healthcare Software?
Just like a hardware solution that needs to be tested thoroughly before market release, a software solution demands similar due diligence. Even more so, since the healthcare industry deals with matters of life and death, within the healthcare sphere, a myriad of tasks depend on technology. Software applications are developed to cater to these different tasks, making the process efficient, accurate, and free of human errors.
Healthcare software testing covers areas such as electronic health records (EHR) applications, medical billing, insurance claims, telemedicine platforms, medical administrative systems, medical imaging and research, and even medical tracking and wellness apps. For facilitating smooth operations between providers (like hospitals and clinics), receivers (like patients), intermediaries (like insurance companies), regulatory authorities, and solution vendors, these applications tend to be designed for a demographic that includes users right from beginners to veterans.
Testing Techniques for Healthcare Software
Having a good testing process in place is going to ensure customer satisfaction and better ROI. The software testing principles can be applied to healthcare applications as well. The only catch here is that the testers should understand the system under test, whether performing manual or automation testing. Some popular forms of testing that are beneficial for healthcare applications are:
- Functional testing: To test the primary functionality of different modules within the application.
- End-to-end testing: To test workflows from an end user’s point of view. Unlike other levels of testing like unit testing and integration or component testing, the scenarios require interacting with the system as a whole. Here is a comprehensive guide on end-to-end testing.
- Usability and UI testing: This is important as the application should be easy to use and intuitive to the end user- a doctor, patient, administrative staff, or even an insurance agent.
- Compliance testing: This is a critical aspect of testing in the healthcare industry. Application compliance is mandatory per laws and regulations like HIPAA for the US, GDPR for the EU, DICOM for medical image exchange, HL7 for data exchange, and FDA.
- Security testing: Vulnerabilities in the system can prove very expensive in the healthcare industry due to the heavy penalties set by the different compliance standards. Ensuring that the application, user’s data, and transactions are secure is of utmost importance.
- Mobile testing: With the popularity of mobile devices and the internet, the need to test across various platforms has also become a vital part of the testing process. Read this informative article on how to go about mobile testing.
- Performance testing: Testing these applications for performance through stress testing or load testing is an excellent idea to ensure that the application is ready for real-time use.
- Integration testing: Refers to checking if the application can work in conjunction with other systems like legacy medical platforms or other services.
Challenges in Healthcare Testing
Testing applications catering to healthcare require testers to keep these considerations in mind.
- Data and system security: A healthcare application is subject to strict regulatory requirements, such as HIPAA (in the United States) or GDPR (in the European Union). Testers need to verify that the software complies with these regulations. Healthcare applications also deal with sensitive patient data, making data privacy and security paramount.
- Testing with extensive data: Medical records in the form of patient reports, scan images, bills, and insurance details can be complex. Having a diverse dataset without compromising the patients’ anonymity is a task. Also, the system at hand should work with the expected data combinations to give the desired outcome.
- Application usability: The application must be user-friendly for the target audience. UI testing becomes essential here. If it is an administrative staff portal, it needs to be custom to their operational needs. In contrast, if used by a patient persona, the same application should be simple and cater to the patient’s needs.
- Cross-platform testing: Healthcare applications must function consistently on different devices, operating systems, and browsers. Ensuring the automation testing tool enables cross-platform testing will save time and provide good test coverage.
How testRigor Transforms Healthcare Testing
Using automation testing as a part of your testing process to cover ground is the best way to ensure you get a high-quality application that does not falter. testRigor is one of the best options in the market for functional, end-to-end, and user acceptance testing. It leverages all the latest AI technologies, i.e., NLP, generative AI, and ML, to make automation testing as close to human testing as possible without any of the drawbacks of manual testing.
Let’s examine how you can benefit from this powerful automation testing tool when testing your healthcare application.
Negligible test maintenance overhead
Test maintenance is known to be every automation tester’s nightmare. But not anymore, thanks to testRigor’s AI-powered engine that ensures you spend less time on test maintenance. One of the significant factors that led to this is testRigor not depending on implementation details of UI elements like XPaths or CSS values. It solely relies on the text visible on the UI as locators to identify the elements on the screen through AI algorithms.
Any change in the application or element attributes is automatically incorporated into the test cases using testRigor’s self-healing capabilities, requiring negligible test maintenance effort.
Ultra-easy, no-code test creation
A truly no-code tool, testRigor harnesses the power of AI to let you write test cases in plain English statements. Even telling testRigor which element to look for is easy; just mention how it appears on the screen and forget unstable XPath and CSS locators. You can also write test cases using the generative AI feature of testRigor. Just provide the test case description in the title, and test steps will be generated automatically within seconds.
There is even an option to use the testRigor record-and-playback tool to generate test cases in plain English. These test creation features enable everyone on your team to write and execute test cases. Whether they have programming knowledge it does not matter anymore!
Test any application across platforms
With testRigor, you can test web applications across desktops, mobile devices, and native and hybrid applications. Suppose you want to test across multiple operating systems, configurations, and device combinations. In that case, you can easily use testRigor’s integrations with device farms and infrastructure frameworks like BrowserStack and LambdaTest.
Carry out data-driven testing
You can create your datasets within testRigor or import data. You can also generate unique test data based on the input type (supports 50+ types) or format using RegEx. This helps make testing easier in scenarios where the test case needs to be executed multiple times but with different data inputs.
testRigor complies with the highest security standards like HIPAA and SOC2. Your company’s PII is never recorded during testing, and thanks to their rigorous access controls, you can rest assured knowing that security and confidentiality are being maintained.
See the list of testRigor’s top features.
The Bottom Line
Technology adoption is increasing in the healthcare industry, so a thorough software testing process is crucial. Due to the critical nature of the healthcare sector and the stringent regulatory environment, a comprehensive understanding of the healthcare industry and the specific requirements of the applications being tested is needed.
Using test automation tools driven by AI like testRigor will help you achieve your testing goals within budget, in the least amount of time, and in the most effortless way possible.