Technology, globalization and continual economic pressures are taking our world by storm. Every industry is having to evolve at breakneck speeds to keep up with the new demands and expectations of consumers. The following top 10 healthcare trends will completely transform the industry – within the next few years.

Top 10 Healthcare Trends Through 2020

1. Intelligent Rx

Intelligent Rx refers to biologic or pharmaceutical medical treatments that are smart enough to focus on targeting specific types of cells or areas of the body – even in one individual versus another. There’s still a lot of research going on in the field, but it’s definitely a trend to watch. When this type of medicine starts to become mainstream, it will have a huge impact on the ability to deliver precision medicine.

2. Personalized Medicine

Personalized medicine starts with precision medicine which involves identifying genomic, proteomic, and metabolomic clinical information that allows accurate predictions to be made about an individual’s susceptibility of developing disease, the course of disease, and his or her response to specific treatments. Personalized medicine adds in aspects of non-clinical care that round out and drive the total health of each person. It’s still in the early stages, but advancements in the understanding of the human genome are quickly evolving, enabling healthcare providers to more accurately tailor treatments to each individual.

3. Value Based Reimbursement

As healthcare costs continue to rise, more and more payers are exploring reimbursement models that give providers higher pay if they provide high-quality, low-cost care. A recent study commissioned by McKesson reports that 81 percent of all hospitals already have one or more forms of value-based reimbursement forming some part of their revenue model. They expect that by 2020, two thirds of payments will be based on reimbursement models with value measures.

Learn more: Download the Surviving Value-Based Reimbursement Through Innovation ebook.

4. Devolution: Care Setting

Back in the “old days”, patients received care in a hospital or Doctor’s office. Now care is being transitioned to lower-cost, more convenient and comfortable settings such as outpatient clinics, ambulatory settings, or even at home. As providers find ways to provide high quality service at a lower expense, the healthcare landscape will continue to transform.

5. Price Sensitivity

Price sensitivity has played a minor role in the largely third party payer driven healthcare industry – until now. As payers of all types shift costs to patients, individuals are demanding cost and quality information on their provider and treatment options. Payers are also heavily impacted by rising costs and are constantly searching for ways to reduce expenses. In order to remain competitive, payers, providers and suppliers will be continually developing new strategies to provide high quality service and products at an affordable price.

Learn more: Download the Payer Strategies for Specialty Drug Management ebook.

6. Devolution: Provider

The devolution of healthcare providers is driven by an increasingly severe shortage of physicians and a grudging recognition that many healthcare services can be provided with quality by “physician extenders” of various types as well as others. The result is that clinical patient care is increasingly provided by non-physicians along an education and experience continuum including physician assistants, nurse practitioners, RNs, LPNs, pharmacists, and even home health aides, family member caregivers, and sometimes the patients themselves. This evolution of healthcare provider types will continue to evolve and impact the industry over the next few years.

7. Telemedicine

Telemedicine allows healthcare providers to communicate with, diagnose, and treat patients remotely via video, email, smart phones, and other telecommunication technology. This type of healthcare service is becoming increasingly popular as providers strive to provide the best service at the lowest cost.

8. Virtual Hospitals

Today’s (and tomorrows!) technology is combining with innovative collaboration arrangements to enable patients to receive highly skilled and specialized diagnosis and treatment in their local hospital setting. Using video chat, remote sensory technology, and robotics, hospitals can now partner with specialists from around the world while treating patients locally.

9. Population Health

Population health is an approach to healthcare that analyzes data from defined groups of people, identifies risk factors, and aims to optimize the health of the entire group through interventions appropriate to the health status of each individual.  It’s a critical key component of value-based care and reimbursement. Economic sustainability of the model is highly dependent on data availability and powerful predictive and prescriptive analytics.

10. Devolution: Technology (Including Wearables)

Devolution of healthcare technology brings clinical and information technology capabilities closer to patients wherever they are. Technology that supports diagnosis, monitoring, and clinical procedures was recently only available in the hospital setting due to size, cost, and required training to operate. Now it’s getting smaller, cheaper, and simpler. As a result, it is moving out to the devolved care settings previously described.

For ideas on how to identify new opportunities, accelerate growth, and overcome performance challenges amidst all of these trending issues, contact us today.

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