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Key Drivers in the Future of Healthcare

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Key Drivers in the Future of Healthcare

In this article, Michele Holcomb shares the three key drivers in healthcare.

I lead a team that sets the course for the future of Cardinal Health. We look around corners, study the trends and drivers that will shape our industry and the competitive environment, and develop strategies to address our customers’ needs. Our mission: To ensure that patients receive the care they need, at a cost that makes sense for the healthcare system.

Every year we evaluate the top 10 trends in healthcare. The trends on this year’s list (below) are largely the same as they were 13 months ago, but COVID-19 has accelerated, intensified and amalgamated some of these trends in significant ways. This is likely to have long-term impacts for how healthcare is delivered in the future.

Some of the most meaningful accelerations I’m seeing are in three areas: patients are becoming more proactive in their own healthcare, providers are taking a more holistic approach in treating patients and the digitization of healthcare is enabling new treatments and determining the right treatments.

Patients are becoming more proactive, shifting sites of care

Patients are doing more research to understand, participate in and advocate for their own health. More than a third of us go online to identify and understand a medical condition. Although two-thirds of us say that looking up our symptoms online is overwhelming, we can’t seem to stop. Last year, each of us spent about a week of our lives looking for healthcare information online.

I believe that soon we all will expect to easily access medical information about conditions and payments online, just like we access the information in other parts of our lives. As this trend progresses, health systems, physicians, pharmacies, payors and other healthcare players will need to reconsider how they reach out to patients and share the medical information that informs patients’ choices.

The desire to advocate for our own healthcare is, in part, shifting where we get care. Even before the pandemic, healthcare was shifting from traditional acute care settings (hospitals) to more non-acute settings. Hip and knee replacements, for example, now often happen at ambulatory surgery centers rather than in hospitals.

Key points include:

  • Telehealth
  • Online pharmacies

  • Holistic health practices

Read the full article, 3 Key drivers in Healthcare, on LinkedIn.