The healthcare industry is overflowing with both challenges and opportunities for payers and providers. As a new market of previously uninsured Americans opens up, health plans will have to adapt, both marketing to these consumers and keeping their existing members loyal with effective engagement strategies. The changes ahead also require providers to focus on operational efficiencies, keeping costs down in order to compete in the era of consumer-driven healthcare. That being said trends such as big data, mobile and IoT are transforming the healthcare industry.
Healthcare providers and payors are continually embracing innovative mobile solutions aiming toward achieving efficient patient engagement. Enterprises are now harnessing the power of mobile to offer improved services to patients. The practice of medicine and public health, supported by mobile devices, is projected to be a 26 billion dollar industry by 2017. With over 97,000 health and fitness related mobile apps currently on Google Play and Apple App Store, and four million downloads per day, it is difficult to deny its rising popularity across the industry. This helps in actively collaborating with patients in real time by utilizing a mobile device which can improve health outcomes. A new generation of smart services are redefining doctor-patient relationships and giving patients greater control over their healthcare status and needs. However, on one hand while a large chunk of the population is shifting toward mobile technology, a certain group of consumers (typically older in age) continues to desire and demand face-to-face interaction with their providers. And, although the health industry has been touched by cutting-edge technology for years, its legacy infrastructure, paper-pushing, and archaic procedures are as obvious today as ever before.
“The healthcare industry is now embracing innovative mobile and data analytics solutions aimed at achieving effective and meaningful patient engagement”
The Power of Data
In today’s scenario, care providers need to come to terms with the end user perspective, which is increasingly shifting toward healthcare interactions involving the web and all things mobile. And, there is a difference between the consumer and the patient perspective, therefore the way to approach their engagement and information exchange depends upon the patient’s health status as well as age and other personal factors. In general, the younger generation tends to be more aggressive and progressive, while on the other hand, the majority of the older generation is somewhat the opposite, and thus their way of accessing, understanding and using information is different. Clearly, providers must offer services (on-line and in-person) that effectively engage patients “where they are” and truly improve their healthcare journey.
Healthcare organizations strive to improve quality and efficiency of care while cultivating patient (not sure what this means–centricity) centricity. Understanding the patient in the context of who they are as individuals is essential in creating effective programs that drive change. This can be achieved with clinical and advanced analytics enhanced with big data providing a more complete view for insight into care coordination, patient engagement and outreach.
Impact of IoT in the Healthcare Industry
The amount of health data is exploding in line with the growing adoption of health and medical apps, due to the increasingly wearable, portable, and user-friendly devices using smart sensors that can capture and transmit all kinds of biometric data. Healthcare providers now use new wireless technologies to monitor patients remotely in order to detect their health problems early and for a timely recovery.
Technological innovations in the healthcare industry continue to provide physicians with new ways to improve the quality of care delivered to their patients and improve the state of global healthcare. Through technology’s integration with the healthcare industry, patients around the world will continue to benefit.
Courtney Fisher-Lewis, Associate CIO, Saint Luke’s Health System & Ex-Sr. Director, IS Program Management, Children’s Mercy Hospital David Chou, SVP & CIO, Harris Health System & Ex-Chief Information & Digital Officer, Children’s Mercy Hospital