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By Tom Brown • June 14, 2017

Top 3 Healthcare Trends from AHIP 2017

After some serious last minute negotiating with our marketing team, last week I flew to Texas and attended AHIP 2017. I travel frequently for work, but this was somehow the first time I had been to Austin.

At AHIP I had the pleasure of being an attendee which was a nice change of pace because I am typically the exhibitor at healthcare conferences. After listening to a few hours of conversations on stage, I found there were really 3 key trends I could pull from AHIP 2017:

  1. Emerging technologies play a key role in transforming the patient experience

Sitting in the audience, it was difficult not to get excited about the technology being shared with us. I saw everything from smart toilets to EKGs performed by the touch of a finger to handheld ultrasound devices that now allow patients real time imagining of things like kidney stones from the comfort of their homes. These technologies are no longer just a distant ideal dream. They’re here today.

And while the potential of connected health hasn’t been fully recognized yet, it will be fascinating to see what the patient experience looks like in 5 to 10 years when these emerging technologies mature.

I’m looking forward to the day I will be able to tell Alexa my daily food intake, any exercise performed, and ask questions to yield responses based on my input. Maybe then I will have an answer for where I should eat that late-night slice of chocolate cake!

 Voice enabled technology like Amazon’s Alexa already allows people living with chronic conditions and participating in clinical trials to seamlessly keep track of their daily activities both at home and on the road.  I can only imagine how the next iteration of these technologies will transform the patient experience from how we know it today.

  1. Value Based Contracts will continue to grow.

 Over the last few years healthcare has been shifting from a fee-for-service model to a quality of care model. Historically this shift happened because of various legislations that encouraged the healthcare ecosystem to really focus on the care of the patient. Today when I think of value based contracts, like many, I think of agreements between healthcare providers and insurance companies to give the best care for their patients. 

After AHIP I realized the new value based contracts are being driven from the force between big pharma and insurance companies. At AHIP, I learned that only ~25% of patients report positive outcomes from a new drug after it hits the market. I am emerged in healthcare every day and I found these statistics alarming.

It means insurance companies are paying for the medication of 4 people but only 1 is noticing a difference in their treatment. From an insurance company’s perspective, it’s unjustifiable to pay for new drugs with big price tags knowing that the success rate is low.   

Hence, in the interest of keeping both sides honest and doing what’s right for the patient, we continue to explore and implement value based contracts. 

  1. Connecting disparate data systems remains an issue for both Payers and Providers.

When I go to my primary care physician, I seldom think about where my information lives and how each technology talks to the other. But when a week later I have bills from my doctor’s office and my insurance company and I spend hours playing phone tag with both parties to resolve a bill, I understand there needs to be a better way.

Thankfully, organizations are already easing this burden by connecting disparate systems and unifying the patient experience.  While most people still live without a central record AHIP brought conversations of hope around the “golden record”. When it exists universally the patient experience is being transformed into better care.

 

            Overall, AHIP was a great experience. I enjoyed the speakers and learned significantly more information than what I could share in this blog post today. From both a professional and personal standpoint, I am excited to see where the wave of focus on patient engagement will take us.

If you’re interested in learning more about how CloudMine reduces risk and improves patient experience by downloading our whitepaper here.