2018 Global healthcare Outlook
For health plans, and the US health care industry overall, 2017 was marked by efforts to repeal and replace the ACA. While the continuing ACA political landscape is certainly newsworthy, as we look to 2018, it is important for health plans to consider the big-picture, “outside the Beltway.” Explore the five trends that could have major implications for health plans in the New Year and beyond
US health care providers:
As we head into 2018, many hospitals and health systems are paddling upstream, straddling two canoes between value-based care and fee-for-service. How will hospital leaders navigate these waters? What other challenges and opportunities lie ahead in the New Year? Explore four challenges—and potential solutions—hospital and health system leaders might face as we look to 2018.
The evolution of smart health care
With the ever-evolving policies, processes, and capabilities and given the magnitude and complexity impacting the sector, smart health care is not going to come easy. Clinicians usually have difficulty coordinating appointments and procedures, sharing test results, and involving patients in their treatment plan. In other words, health care providers may be working hard but are they working “smart”. How is health care moving the barriers of the hospital walls? This 2018 outlook reviews the current state of the global health care sector; explores trends and issues impacting health care providers, governments, other payers, and patients; and suggests considerations for stakeholders as they seek to deliver high-quality, cost-efficient, and smart health care.
Global health care sector issues in 2018
Creating a positive margin in an uncertain and changing health economy
Public and private health systems have been facing revenue pressures and declining margins for years. The trend is expected to persist as increasing demand, infrastructure upgrades, and therapeutic and technology advancements strain the already limited financial resources. As a result, spending is expected to be driven by aging and growing populations, developing market expansion, clinical and technology advances, and rising labor costs. As health care costs increase though, affordability and insurance coverage remain problematic. Health care providers are also collaborating to gain competitive advantage.
Health care stakeholders are pursuing new cost reduction measures, such as developing alternative staffing models, shifting patients to outpatient services, and reducing administrative and supply costs. In addition, they are exploring new revenue sources such as intellectual property (IP) capitalization, investing in JVs, commercializing their foreign assets, and launching new companies and philanthropic organizations.
Strategically moving from volume to value
The health care industry is participating in risk-bearing, coordinated care models and continues to move away from the traditional fee-for-service (FFS) system. Stakeholders are moving from volume to value through reform policies, programs promoting operational efficiency, technology use, population health management, wellness, and addressing the social determinants of health.
Responding to health policy and complex regulations
Health systems worldwide share overarching health policy and regulatory goals—ensuring quality care and patient safety, mitigating fraud and cyber threats. Digital health care technology solutions addressing better diagnostics and more personalized therapeutic tools are leading to the challenge of data protection.
The trends in data management and security include cognitive computing, cloud-based, interoperable electronic health records, and Internet of Things (IoT). Cybersecurity and data risk management continue to be front and center, especially with patients taking a more active control of their health, and wanting access and reliability to their data.
Holistic approaches to investments in people, processes, and technology will be key to regulatory compliance. A thorough assessment by health care businesses to understand how recent and upcoming policy changes will impact organizational priorities is an imperative. Health care providers also need to explore strategies to build second-line defenses to reduce their administrative, financial, and reputational exposure.
A successful transition to value-based care requires that market players and consumers move beyond transaction-based treatment to the holistic health of populations; from treatment to prevention/wellness; and from individual to population health. Health care providers can also look at deploying innovative care delivery models based on data and analytics.
Stay up-to-date with the latest developments, trending news stories and industry advances with the Market Reports Center. Don’t forget to join our mailing list to receive monthly updates on blog and information about new report