HEALTH TRAIN EXPRESS
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All of us as patients are impacted by 3 key market forces in 2015.
1. Patients are now major payors. Life science companies have long had staff dealing with so-called “managed markets:” big payors like the VA, Medicare and Medicaid, national health plans and self-insured employers. But there’s a new payor in town, thanks to high-deductible health plans and account-based medical savings plans such as HSAs: that, is the patient him/herself. And that makes the patient a health/care consumer.
The key data point here comes fromStrategy&’s survey of consumers in late 2014, finding that about the same proportion of U.S. adults trust large retail and digitally-enabled companies to help them manage their health as they do health care providers. Underneath that statistic (roughly 40% of U.S. adults across the 3 types of organizations) is consumers’ perception that retail and digital companies are more transparent and demontrate clear value.
2. The patient-person has evolved into homo informaticus – a multi-channel, information-seeking species. Increasingly, that communication is via mobile platforms, and especially powerful as smarphones have become, as Dr. John Mattison CMIO of Kaiser Permanente has called them, “the new wellness channel.” Dr. Eric Topol, editor of Medscape and of the Scripps Medical Center, waxed lyrically about the advent of smartphones in digital health in his seminal book, The Patient Will See You Now.