A year of uncertainty and opportunity
The election of Donald J. Trump has ushered in a new era for the US healthcare industry, which has spent years adapting to the Affordable Care Act. Yet, despite the potential policy changes in Washington, the painstaking and challenging work of shifting to value-based care continues. PwC Health Research Institute’s annual report highlights the forces that are expected to have the most impact on the healthcare industry this year.
Many of 2017’s Top issues highlight how this shift toward value is occurring, and how traditional health organizations and new entrants are responding to it. There are three main tactics that organizations are using to address this shift to value—adapting, innovating and building new programs and approaches to their work.
1. Under a new administration, the fate of the ACA remains unclear
2. Pharma’s new strategic partner? Patients
3. Easing the training wheels off value-based payment
4. Insert your card here for healthcare
5. Paging Dr. Drone: It’s time to prepare for emerging technologies
6. The battle against infectious diseases sparks invention
7. Rx cauliflower: Nutrition moves to population health
8. Putting the brakes (gently) on drug prices
9. A year of new partnerships and collaborations
10. Preparing medical students for work in a value-based world
President Trump has made repealing and replacing the ACA one of his top priorities. A few weeks after his election, details of his plans were scarce, though he said in interviews that consumers would not experience lapses in coverage should the law be repealed. The President has also indicated that he may keep popular parts of the law, including the requirement that insurance coverage cannot be denied based on health state or age. This requirement generally causes premium costs—consumers’ most important consideration when choosing a health plan—to climb.
The US health industry lags behind other industries, such as retail and telecommunications, in deploying emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence, drones and virtual reality. This year marks the arrival of these technologies, and we're beginning to see their impacts on business models, operations, workforce needs and cybersecurity risks.
As established health organizations and new entrants focus on nutrition as a way to prevent costly medical problems and improve the overall health of the populations they serve, the demand for these services among populations fuels growth and innovation. A recent HRI survey found that consumers want more nutritional advice, especially from their healthcare resources.