We Believe Series: Digital Health Will Reshape Patient Engagement, Care Delivery, and Payment Models

We Believe Digital Web

The digitization of healthcare has prompted a quantum shift in the traditional physician-patient relationship, driven by the proliferation of technology and consumer demands for convenient, personalized services. Only a decade ago, what exists today seemed like something from a galaxy far away—EHR adoptions were faced with mixed sentiment from providers, patients were expected to wait patiently (pun intended) to see physicians, and many traveled great distances for face-to-face visits with providers only to duplicate paperwork and repeat diagnostic tests due to a lack of data exchange. Today, providers use consumer data and digital health applications to more proactively engage patients in their care and intervene in a timelier manner

With the growing use of smartphones (currently 275 million users in the US), consumers are expecting real-time connections to information and services in a personalized way. Across every industry, the digitization of the consumer experience has already disrupted how and when services are purchased. Provider organizations must accept the need of heightened consumer engagement—and learn from other service-oriented industries—by implementing digital health applications that engage patients in a consumer-centric approach, as illustrated in below.


Digital Health: Scaling Personalized, Consumer-Centric Care

Historically, healthcare has been delivered in a provider-centric model with face-to-face interactions in brick-and-mortar locations to address conditions as they present. The future requires the successful execution of a digital health strategy that integrates technologies to enable and support—not replace—traditional healthcare settings by creating personalized services that direct consumers to the appropriate care at the correct time. The new threshold to healthcare is a digital front door, whether the appropriate care setting is a hospital, an ambulatory center, or a patient’s home. Cohesive digital health platforms will improve access to care and drive the delivery of better, more personalized care to larger and more diverse patient populations.

The accelerated adoption of digital health is disrupting the industry—altering the economics of care, creating new competitors, opening new markets, and reshaping payment models. Health systems have an opportunity to lead the transformation or risk being a mere vendor of services as new and well-capitalized market entrants fill consumers’ needs through a connected delivery system driven by customer service, access, and data.

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