Health care innovation touches every area of the healthcare delivery system and is driven by new technologies, the need for efficiency and cost effectiveness, and the healthcare consumers themselves. In the innovation process, improvement is spearheaded by professionals across the healthcare spectrum such as data analysts, physicians, educators, administrators, and engineers. Here are some trending areas where the focus on health care innovation is making itself known.
The Patient As Consumer
As the view of health care as a consumer commodity progresses, patients will demand value more than ever before. They want accessible and affordable care that delivers a better experience than in the past, and are increasingly demanding convenience. Patients are responding favorably and increasingly using mobile device applications that deliver accessibility and convenience for their health care. Providers, healthcare product suppliers and other health services that adopted mobile friendly digital applications early on are realizing they edge they have in the health care marketplace.
Data Access Improvement
The ability for the healthcare system as a whole to integrate data operations across platforms has been lacking in many cases. Now there is an interest in developing an infrastructure robust enough to handle the ever increasing role of medical data. More accessible data translates into the capacity of health care administrators to direct beneficial changes in the delivery of health care and organizational management.
With an increase in data accessibility comes a greater utilization of business intelligence in healthcare administration. Higher learning institutions such as USC EMHA are already training professionals to utilize this approach in order to develop innovative approaches to improve patients’ experiences and safety as well as value for stakeholders.
As improved access to data increases its usability, expect more of a focus on preventative care and chronic disease management through education. Preventative care will also be able to be improved from general news releases to content that is individualized to resonate with the needs of patients. The digital platform will continue to be the leader in health education endeavors.
Health education will continue to have a personal component as well. Corporations and healthcare systems alike will continue to increase in-person health education with patients and their families. USC MPH sees the vital role that health educators play in improving patients’ clinical experiences and outcomes as well as the efficiency of health care systems. Professionals such as public health educators and health promotion specialists will lead the way in preventative care through education.
The move for improved health care provider websites has its impetus with both the patients and preventative healthcare education. Patients demand more convenient and consumable information, and health educators want to extend their proactive approach. As a result, healthcare websites will improve in their ability to provide more relevant health information to consumers in clean and easy to use design formats. Business analytics will also be employed to tailor featured information specific to the patient.
There is beginning to be a trend of the increased ability and expanded usage of biosensors to monitor the health and daily activities of patients. Non-invasive skin sensors will increase in utilization by medical personnel as their relevance increases with technological advancements.
With the health care industry rapidly changing, health care systems need to embrace the necessity of innovation as a strategy to remain relevant and respond to opportunities for growth. While patients are demanding more value, innovations that deliver that value in education, communication, and health monitoring are fueled by technological advances.
The challenges for health care stakeholders, providers, and patients are very real and will continue to provide pressure to innovate new solutions. Better patient experiences and outcomes, as well as cost reductions, are the goals that health care innovation makes reachable.