There's a reason why we put our health above all. As the saying goes, if you don't have your health, you've got nothing. The massive strides that healthcare has taken over the past century-plus are responsible for extending longevity and improving quality of life worldwide. It stands to reason that healthcare will only improve as the years pass, but what will progress in healthcare look like?
These industry insiders share their views from the front lines of healthcare to show us what the future of healthcare will look like:
1. Dr. Janelle Luk, Medical Director and co-founder of Generation Next Fertility
“Our healthcare system is recognizing the importance of individualized care. With current technological advancements, healthcare providers are striving to provide continuous care through mobile applications and remote monitoring. Through these methods, patients can provide real time status updates, so that providers can give medical feedback in a timely manner. This can also improve fragmented or delayed care caused by the wait times for physical appointments. Most importantly, we need to also humanize medicine and not let this technology decreases human touch.”
2. Kaveh Safavi, Global Head of Healthcare at Accenture
“The future of healthcare is being driven by groundbreaking digital technologies that create convenient and improved care options for patients. 82 percent of health executives say extended reality (virtual and augmented reality tech) will increase access for patients and improve the overall patient experience, according to an Accenture study. Further, 77 percent of health executives expect to invest in IoT and smart sensors this year and nearly half of providers plan to invest in extended reality within the next year Additionally, nearly half of health providers are planning to invest in this technology in the next year.”
3. April Koh, co-founder and CEO of Spring Health
“There is so much talk these days about chatbots, AI, and other technologies that can quickly provide access to care. While technology can, and should, play an important role in fixing healthcare, I don’t think we should underestimate the importance of the human touch for delivering quality care. We tend to forget that clinicians don’t just treat patients; they help them understand their illness, the value of getting treatment — especially the right treatment for their unique need – and motivate them to stick with it. Cutting clinicians out of the picture makes it all too easy to give up on applications after a few engagement sessions.”
4. Michael DePalma, co-founder of Hu-manity
“The future of healthcare is patient-centered and inclusive. It is is the pivot towards the meaningful incorporation of some long overdue ideas:
1. The empowerment of the individual patient, as a consumer, and as a partner in their own care.
2. Transparency across the economics and coordination of care.
3. The ability to truly deliver the personalization that patients experience, as consumers in the rest of their lives.
4. The inclusion of the patient in the economics and control of their healthcare and health-related data, outside the already protected areas of treatment, payment, and operations.
Personalized medicine, by definition, requires an approach tailored to an individual patient. This includes a person’s genomics, health, risks, lifestyle, diet, history, and more. This “n of 1” approach is best enabled with a truly engaged empowered patient vs the paternalistic model that has been the historic model for healthcare.”
5. João Bocas, Wearables Expert at Digital Salutem
“I envision a future where taking responsibility for our personal health will be the best and most sustainable way to address present health systems challenges, therefore self-care, self-monitoring, and personal health management will be certainly the traits that any organizational health system or institution would like to promote going forward. I truly believe that for this to be possible a great deal of health education efforts is needed to break many perceived barriers associated with healthcare.”
6. Melanie Matheu, founder and CEO of Prellis Biologics
“Health care of the future will be a powerful combination of distributed technology and specific therapeutic interventions with lower cost profiles. The forces driving these changes are the introduction of significant technology advances from two major fields; biotechnology and novel hardware meets software innovations. These forces are rapidly shifting healthcare towards a distributed, less expensive, patient-powered system.”
7. Mike Kisch, co-founder and CEO of Beddr
“Up until now, there’s been a one-size-fits-all approach to healthcare, which hasn’t been beneficial for many reasons. Access and affordability are key reasons why this approach is outdated, and the future of healthcare will become increasingly more individual and personalized. While we’re seeing a shift to these kinds of solutions, we’ll also see people being more proactive about their health – learning what affects them on a holistic level.
Because healthcare will become more personal, individuals will advocate for designing better and more practical health solutions – providing critical feedback to how the system needs to be changed. We see this currently with how people are tracking their sleep or steps with wearables, but what is the data telling you? We have so much data that’s being collected, but people will want to know more about what they can do with this information and how it can become actionable for their own health.”
8. Zayna Khayat, Future Strategist at SE Health
“- From reactive “sick care” to predictive, proactive, preventative “life care”
-From crude and analog to precise, intelligent, personalized, tailored
-From episodic, intermittent and siloed to: continuous and integrated
-From institution-centered to decentralized, dephysicalized, disintermediated, or, what I call “digical”
-From provider-led to people-powered
-From a cost, activity and fee-for-service focused biz model to fee-for-health, pay for results.”
9. Roeland Pater, founder and CEO of Nori Health
“The future will be personalized and traditional and digital healthcare will blend together to provide optimal care for patients. Technology will play a major role, but will not replace traditional care, but empower it and take pressure off professionals.”
10. Matt Fairhurst, CEO and co-founder of Skedulo
“The biggest change in U.S. healthcare in the next few years will be driven by the need to grapple with the shortage of clinicians while finding ways to better serve savvier patients.”
11. Michael Demetriou, founder and CEO of Opear
“The future of healthcare is a marketplace that competes for patients with the same level of service as restaurants, hotels, and retail. Historically, our choices have been limited by what's nearby and in-network. But now, technology is giving way to all kinds of creative solutions that should have traditional practices thinking seriously about how to attract and
12. Paula Muto, MD, Founder and CEO of UBERDOC
“Predicting healthcare trends is a popular subject, mostly because you can never be wrong. Just assume the worst and you will be on target. Prices are too high, wait times too long, and patient choice irrelevant. However, biotechnology is taking us in a different direction. Personalized and efficient therapies are replacing a standardized, one size fits all approach to care. Why do we need a complex system to get the right antibiotic or to get your hernia fixed? The answer is we don’t.”
13. Mark Chataway, Principal Consultant at Hyderus
“I’m an optimist. People say that an ageing population means rationing and collapse, but they’ve forgotten what’s already happened: in the UK, for example, we have half the hospital beds that we had in 1990. Back then, vast AIDS wards warehoused HIV patients waiting to die; today, most hospitals don’t have a single person in a ward because of HIV.
Similar dramatic change has happened in hepatitis C and a few blood and skin cancers. Expect to see it happen in many solid cancer tumours by 2030. Heart and neurological diseases may be tougher but, if we maintain incentives, there will be breakthroughs there too.
The threat to this happening is protectionism as doctors, insurers and hospitals try to limit the impact of new drug and diagnostic technologies.
The challenge won’t be healthcare, but social care as more and more of us live until the body just gives up.”
14. Amy Baxter, MD, founder & CEO of Pain Care Labs
“The US Pain Task Force released its recommendations after a public commentary period. The two big takeaways were that the biopsychosocial model needs to be supported, and drug-free pain relief options need to be encouraged and reimbursed. Coupled with the public outrage at drug costs, this is likely to begin the turnaround from pharma as a panacea to a wider variety of exercise, medical device, and psychosocial interventions for multiple healthcare issues beyond pain.”
15. Khang Vuong, Founder and CEO of TalktoMira
“- Decentralization: a shift from a brick-and-mortar health delivery system with hospitals being the hub to a community-based network of primary care physicians and specialists.
– A convergence of tech and medicine: as tech giants like Apple, Amazon, and Google expand their footprint into healthcare along with the SAAS economy, we will see more health programs augmenting or substituting medications. (slowly happening in diabetes management)”
16. Gundu Reddy, Admitting Psychiatrist at MidHudson Benedictine Hospital
“Ideally the future of healthcare is to use technology including artificial intelligence to reduce cost, increase the accuracy of diagnosis, reduce duplicate paperwork, and make affordable healthcare accessible to more people.
Once advancement in the last five years is the widespread use of cloud-based software, which dramatically reduces costs and increases the accessibility of video conferencing, electronic health records, e -prescribing and other telemedicine services. This is especially useful in rural areas where there is a shortage of specialists. Telepsychiatry, teleoncology, and telerheumatology, for example, has become a norm rather than an exception in many states.”
17. Patrick Gauthier, Director of Healthcare Solutions at Advocates for Human Potential
“The future will be TIGHT. With Boomers headed into their geriatric healthcare years, our shortage of medical professionals, affordable beds, and money to pay for it all will constrict if not choke already limited resources. How we deal with this bottleneck at a time when social security and Medicare sustainability are already questionable is difficult to predict. Opening the gates to sufficient workforce, prescription drugs, and elder housing will require a tidal shift in our culture and political will. Otherwise the chasm between the health care systems for the rich and poor will continue to widen.”
18. Adam K. Anderson, Chief Scientific Officer of Neuronytics
“The future of healthcare lies in preventive health, which is being executed through a variety of channels, including early detection and identification of new biomarkers. An essential part of the preventive health revolution is ownership of one's personal health data and the ability to control what is done with this information and who is profiting from it. Finding methods of controlling these data, who has access to it, and how it can be commodified translates to empowerment for patients, who are able to plan for healthier futures and play a more active role in how this data is utilized personally and globally.”
19. Christina D. Warner, Author of The Art of Healthcare Innovation
“The future of healthcare will look drastically different than what it has been just 5-10 years ago. It's exciting, and I personally can't wait! If you keep an eye out on some of the innovations in healthcare (and in all areas of healthcare, such as medical devices, pharma, health systems), you will be able to get a small glimpse of what the future of healthcare may look like.”
20. Michael Roub, Managing Partner at Inflection 360
“With a steady flow of private equity investment, several healthcare sectors continue to see consolidation at an increasingly growing rate. Ophthalmology, dental and dermatology all have been targets for several years, however now private equity firms are now investing in other healthcare service areas to find untapped opportunities.
Gastroenterology, orthodontics, anesthesia and other specialties are now joining the ranks of private equity investment. So long as one private equity firm is able to consolidate, bigger firms will subsequently look to acquire. As such, private equity investment in healthcare services will continue to alter the provider landscape for the next decade.”
21. Jeff Robbins, CEO and President of LiveData
“Moving from EHRs to Artificial Intelligence. The successful adoption of electronic health record (EHR) systems coupled with integrating data from other medical systems has created robust Systems of Record (SoR) of patient data. The massive amounts of data associated with SoR has provided both a challenge and an opportunity.”
22. Marissa Fayer, Owner of Health Equity for Women
“Healthcare is going the way of all things digital. Apps and software for detection, prevention, and eventually the treatment of conditions and diseases are being developed and released at such a speed that they are all in competition with each other. Detection and prevention are much easier and attainable right now than treatment, but that will come in the near future. Virtual diagnosis through digital health tech which can be implemented in developing countries creating expanded markets for healthcare companies with minimal overhead.”
23. Brent Wilkinson, CEO of Zillion
“We can expect to see adoption of virtual care programs that focus on the management of chronic conditions (condition management) and reversing their risk factors. Employers are increasingly shifting towards direct contracts with healthcare providers (cutting out the middlemen) and in doing so, they're looking for more progressive providers that bring digital care to the table – everything from integration with wearables and delivering mobile-friendly content, to video communication.
Virtual care will also encompass more than just consultations with physicians. We'll see this category expand to include more holistic and ongoing lifestyle coaching across nutrition, exercise, sleep and stress management.”
24. Lauren Prentiss, Strategy Director at Captains of Industry
“From a business standpoint, the future of healthcare is very bright. We’ve entered what we call the “Amazon era of healthcare.” At its core, this is about being able to distribute healthcare broadly and quickly—when the patient wants it. We’re seeing glimpses of this where unique technology-driven collaborations are happening between hospital systems and tech players non-native to healthcare. I think these unexpected collaborations will soon become the norm. Meanwhile, clinicians call for a future where healthcare is also safe, accessible and sustainable. The partnerships that are also able to operationalize those values will see greater long-term success.”
25. Waqaas Al-Siddiq, CEO of Biotricity
“The future of healthcare will be shaped largely by real-time, remote patient monitoring (RPM). Almost one-fourth of costs for chronic disease care are attributed to comorbid conditions. In order to move to a more holistic approach to healthcare, patient data has to be consolidated, and patient metrics have to be recorded for all vital signs and markers. For example, patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) often times are only treated for CKD and not, for example, heart disease. With almost 50 percent of CKD patients suffering from cardiovascular disease too, this omission can cost the healthcare system – and patients – dearly.”
26. Terrence Ryan, CEO of HealthChampion
“As I see it, the future of the healthcare industry rests in giving consumers control of their own health data. Right now, Electronic Health Records (EHR)s are a mess. By fixing the EHR problem, we can transform the healthcare experience for everyone, allowing caregivers to focus on care and providing individuals the access they need to their data in order to make better healthcare decisions. Right now, one person’s health data is siloed in 20+ different databases between health systems, insurers, apps, etc. If consumers can manage their own health data, they can also choose who can see that data and how it's used. Also, physicians seeing those patients will finally have a holistic view of each patient’s history instead of only their facilities’ siloed information.”
27. Shawn Kernes, Co-Founder and CEO of LARKR On-Demand Behavioral Health
“I see a lot of substantial transformation in the healthcare model over the next 5-10 years. Rising costs and global shortage of healthcare professionals are already forcing the industry to innovate. Recruiting the help and computing power of millions of personal devices (think phones, smart watches, tablets) will help increase people’s access to the healthcare system. A combination of EHR, wearable devices, machine learning and blockchain technologies will allow for continuous and secure gathering and processing of health data leading to increased diagnosis efficiencies. The old model of having to visit your local physician at their office will be redefined.”
28. Anthony Fernando, Chief Operating Officer and CTO at TransEnterix
“The future of healthcare is digital. We will continue to see growth, expansion and further integration of digital technologies across all sectors of the healthcare industry. The challenge will be the ability to employ digital technologies without compromising the patient experience, while lowering costs for hospitals, insurers and patients. It is critical that advanced technologies shaping the future of health care have the ability to operate in today’s value-based healthcare landscape.”
29. David Sawin, VP, Product & Marketing, MobileSmith Health
“More and more patients will continue to close their browsers and pick up their smartphones to dial up better care. Healthcare consumers are already using their mobile devices to find health professionals and facilities for care much like they do when booking a ride to the airport or reserving a table at their favorite restaurant. As for providers, they will finally capitalize on the existing relationships that their patients all have with their smartphones. We'll see a shift in where hospitals and health systems spend their patient engagement dollars – investing in mHealth much more so than in the patient-facing websites – which are quickly losing momentum.
While consumers continue to embrace mobile apps in unprecedented numbers, the healthcare sector still lags behind other industries in adopting a mobile-first strategy for patient experience. However, times are changing and hospitals and health systems will learn how an agile mobile strategy can increase engagement, education and loyalty, all while improving patient outcomes.”
30. Lee Barrett, Executive Director & CEO, Electronic Healthcare Network Accreditation Commission (EHNAC)
“As the threat of cyberattacks continues to affect a diverse set of industries, organizations must look to close privacy and security gaps across networks; address compliance vulnerabilities; assure preparedness plans and increase both cyber protection and ransomware prevention. In fact, this will continue to be a focus in the healthcare space where accreditation non-profits, certification firms and industry associations are collaborating to establish new programs that align with national efforts to address regulatory requirements across identity verification, authentication and privacy/security frameworks. We will also continue to see the shift by healthcare organizations in turning to the use of process best practices and the application of blockchain, cloud-based data storage and other enabling technologies, not only to enhance cybersecurity adherence, but also improve interoperability, and reduce administrative burdens.”
31. Neil J. Gajjar, DDS, MAGD, President at the Academy of General Dentistry
“The future of dental healthcare will include more patient awareness and involvement in their oral care. Through improved communications, patients understand the important correlation between oral health to overall health with links to high blood pressure, pregnancy, diabetes and heart disease. Often, many systemic conditions first manifest in the oral cavity, and patients are beginning to understand how dentists play a key role within their entire medical team. In fact, all professions are now working together more than ever before as we discover links between different conditions, parts of the body and medications.”
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