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There are a number of components for the vision for the future of healthcare. I think the first that many people agree on is it needs to become much more integrated.
The second part of a new vision is really a shift of value. And most healthcare systems have been really concerned with perhaps doing as much as they can. We talk about this transformation from volume to value. I do believe that this is really a key part of the future. So this means payers in particular working with providers to work out what really matters to the populations they serve and for us to define success much more in terms of what matters to patients.
The third is that many of the processes that we use haven’t really ever been designed. They’re just sort of emerged. And as a consequence many of them are pretty sub-optimal and they’ve got lots of inefficiency built in and also lots of risk to the patients in terms of the quality that’s provided them, the safety problems that may arise.
So we need to really rethink and redesign many of our processes. Why do people go to out-patient appointments at a hospital? Well because very often that’s how it’s always been organized and we should be seeing shifts to new models. Could we sort perhaps all of their problems in one visit? Do they need to visit at all? Could we use the phone or web? So a redesign of all of our processes to strip out the waste, to remove the steps that don’t add value.
And then supporting all of that, I think we need to get much cleverer about the use of information and not just information used by the system but by asking the patients to use some of that information themselves to help manage their own care, to understand the system that they’re working in better.
And above all perhaps in all of those four areas to strip out some of the complexity that we’ve created as we try to make things better.
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