This Week Health

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The Medical Futurist postulates, we explore.

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Today in health, it we're going to take a look at the question of will patients become the point of care? My name is bill Russell. I'm a former CIO for a 16 hospital system. And creator of this week health. A set of channels and events dedicated to leveraging the power of community to propel healthcare forward. We want to thank our show sponsors for investing in developing the next generation of health leaders. Short test artist site parlay it's certified health. Notable and service. Now, check them out at this week. health.com/today. Hey, one last thing, share this podcast with a friend or colleague. Get the conversation started. Use it as a foundation for daily or weekly discussions on the topics that are relevant to you and the industry. They can subscribe wherever you listen to podcast. Alright, interesting article today, this is from the medical futurist TMF. , medical futurist.com eight practical predictions. For the near future of healthcare. And I'm just going to focus on one of them. And it's their first one. Their first prediction is patients will become the point of care. And let me give you a couple of excerpts from this. Probably read the whole thing. Now. Let's. It's only two and a half paragraphs. Here you go. In the pursuit of more streamlined and patient-centric healthcare, traditional hospital frameworks are under reassessment. The stereotypical scene. Of long waiting lines, overwhelming paperwork and sterile uninviting corridors symbolize. , dated workflow. The evolution towards modernity backends, a shift from this conventional setup ushering in an era where patients armed with digital health tools. Become the focal point of care. Reducing the dependency on traditional hospital confines. The transformational, the transformation is in part driven by the advent and adoption of digital health technologies. Notably wearables. Telemedicine and solutions like at home lab tests that allow us to carry out procedures at home that formerly were impossible without visiting the healthcare institution. Patients can now monitor their vital signs regardless of their location, sharing this data with healthcare providers remotely. Although this doesn't render hospitals obsolete, we won't have MRI machines at home. It repositions them as health centers. Focus on disease prevention, acute care as specific medical procedures requiring sophisticated equipment. Although we started our list with this trend, this actually will be the end result of a paradigm shift. Let me give you a couple of others just in case you're interested. , healthcare becomes globalized. Remote care is the new norm. , patient designer will rule what hospitals look like. Number five tech giants will join the healthcare ecosystem. Number six, cultural transformational. It'll cause cultural transformation changes the roles. And number seven, access to data makes health care personalized and number eight. New medical teams arise. Or we're going to look at it as the first one. And patients will become the point of care.

You know, this is an interesting question and something that I think the executives. The that the boardroom and the executive leadership teams need to answer. How much care can be provided outside before walls. And how much of that care do health systems want to provide outside of the four walls? And how will technology enable that? We're going to have a webinar today on interoperability. And one of the things that is amazing to me as we have conversations with CEOs and I led to. Different. Uh, discussions today with CIO round tables. And we talked a little bit about social determinants of health was one of the topics we ended up talking about. A fair amount. And one of the things that's pretty obvious is we don't have the information for social determinants to do that work really effectively. And it's going to require getting that information from outside the four walls of the health system. Now the question becomes, are we going to get it directly from the patient? And are we going to give it back to the patient? Is the patient going to become the locus of care. And if they are, is the data going to be with that patient at all times? That's one of the things, but, if I thought about the questions, I would be asking executive leadership teams or boards that were. Looking at this topic right now, I would say, what is possible today? What kind of care can we provide to the patient where the patient lives so we can provide basic level monitoring. I'm currently wearing a blood glucose monitor. It's something that I've. Been trying. I think I shared it with you before. It's really great to have that instant feedback. That instant feedback tells me what foods are good or bad for me, or at least spike my blood. Glucose. It also shows me that eating before bed is really bad for you. Now, I should know that by now enough, people have told me that, but at the end of the day, Now I have a monitor. That's telling me that how effective will those things be at keeping people healthy? Now, we're not talking about healthcare here, if it's a value-based contract. If it's a, , at-risk contract, you want people to be healthy. And how effective are these monitors? At, , educating people and keeping them healthy.

What else is possible right now, as we think about that. Question, obviously it goes to a care outside the four walls of the health system. So now you're talking about tele-health, you're talking about, , care at home. , remote patient monitoring and those kinds of things. , how effective are they? , and if they're not effective today, where are we falling short? Is it the experience? Is it the friction that is associated with that? Is it the quality that we can deliver in those venues?

These would be some of the questions I think are important for a health system to answer. Now, we're going to do a webinar today at one o'clock Eastern time on interoperability. We've great panel. Lined up and I think. One of the things that we are going to be talking about is how can the sharing of that information make healthcare better? , I believe as patients or just consumers in general get more and more of their health data. They're going to be looking for institutions that can help them make meaning out of that data. Well, you want to sort of a graduated process. Where that information gets filtered through some, , AI machine learning, some algorithms. That, , provide , some basic feedback and as it gets more clinical, then maybe it goes through. , clinicians who can then either reach out or be a part of it that could be a service that a health system offers. You're already building a lot of that technology, a lot of those capabilities in place for charged scrubbing and for, , , Before referrals for billing, for coding, for all sorts of other stuff. As you're layering in these AI models, as we talked about yesterday, , those same AI models can make you a good. , healthcare, data, fiduciary. To your community as they have this mountain of data, if they can bring it to you. And have it filtered through , , your algorithms and your AI and machine learning and get some feedback. And then that gradually steps them into your health system. I think that becomes a competitive advantage as well.

So getting back to the original premise from this article, will patients become the center of care to the point of care? And they're talking about a timeline that's pretty quick and I don't foresee that happening. Extremely fast. I do see it happening though. And this is the thing I believe that boards and executive teams need to grapple with and technologists for that matter, which is in a world where more and more technology gets strapped on to the individual themselves. Where they can seek out people to make meaning of the data. That they are collecting. Then do we just become acute care centers?

And I guess the greater question is how do we maintain our relevance? In the health journey of the individuals in our community. Do we connect into those data sources? Do we offer ways for them to make meaning of the data that they've collected for years? They've people have been collecting data and, , again, this technology has gone through the hype cycle and it was way overhyped early on. And the value of the data was not that great number of steps.

Doesn't really do much. , in a medical record, but we're talking about some pretty sophisticated devices now that are providing some real data. That can. Have a significant impact that can actually add value. To the conversation between a clinician and a patient. And maybe we need to look at it through a different lens, which is what is possible today that wasn't possible maybe a year ago, or what is a way for us to increase our value in the care journey so that we maintain our relevance with our community. So they're not looking at big tech, they're not looking at third parties. They are literally looking at the trusted provider down the street, the health system down the street. As somebody that will take that data and make meaning of it.

And then provide them that escalated care if it is required. You know, , I think as we see these predictions and some of them were pretty lofty and some of them are pretty out there, but the question isn't, , is that true? Is it not true? The question is, if that does become a reality, are we prepared for it? And if we believe that the patient is going to become the center of care, Great. Fantastic. We want to engage patients. We want people engaged in their health who are making decisions that are positive for their health. That is what we want.

And then we would have maintained our relevance as health systems. We want to maintain our relevance. As the trusted provider as the trusted source for information as the place you go for not only health care or sick care, but the place you go. To find health. To continue on your health journey. That's the place we want to stake out, regardless of what the predictions say. And. Taking into account that some of the predictions might happen and might come true. How do we stake out that place of the trusted source for health information, for health, for your care journey? No matter what. Of these predictions, what have the technology predictions? What of the data and AI predictions come true? We wanted to stake out that place and make sure that the people in our community are looking to us to provide that. All right. That is all for today. Don't forget to share this podcast with a friend or colleague. We want to thank our channel sponsors who are investing in our mission to develop the next generation of health leaders. Short tests, artists. I parlay it's certified health, notable and 📍 service. Now check them out at this week. health.com/today. Thanks for listening. That's all for now.

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