The immediate future of healthcare

  • Healthcare is already changing substantially.
  • Among the changes are “walk-in” clinics and concierge hospitals.
  • Changes will focus around two guiding principles: lowering costs and improving the patient experience.

Changes are happening in healthcare, but they are happening slowly and are not being covered by the media as much as the cost of prescription drugs.  The immediate future is already in motion…here are my predictions for the near term future..

1ne: Walk-In clinics are going to continue to grow by double digits.  The $18 billion industry was expected to grow 5.8% in 2018 but actual growth has been in double digits. Big players — from health plans to hospital systems to private-equity investors — all want in on urgent care, which grew by 25% between 2014 and 2017.

2wo: Patients will take direct control of their online health records via the cloud which will empower them more choices in healthcare providers.

3hree: Employers are going to join together to provide health insurance to employees in order to lower costs.  They are also going to be experimenting with various incentives to help employees lower healthcare costs such as in house nutritional counseling as well as reimbursements for health club memberships.

4our: Hospital will become smaller and offer more patient focused services such as gourmet food, on-demand movies and rooms that resemble a hotel rather than a hospital.

5ive: Walk-in clinics that offer an immediate full range of services, blood test results, x-rays and MRI’s will be more successful.

6ix: Look for some walk-in clinics to try and brand themselves regionally and eventually nationally.

7even: The use of social media for online health seekers will continue to diminish in importance.

8eight: Successful DTC will focus more on helping patients navigate the complex online health environment rather than trying to sell them.

9ine: There will be renewed calls for the government to negotiate drug prices with drug companies as their profits continue to rise and R&D money declines in favor of buying smaller companies with promising drugs in development.

10en: All healthcare providers are going to focus on patients as customers and will constantly try and measure their satisfaction with services.