Recent innovations in IT like internet of things (IoT), Sensors, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, Big Data and Predictive Analytics all assist in enabling continuous monitoring of patient health, promote healthy life style, track patterns and find possible threats, also alert in advance to avoid emergency situations.
These innovations have sparked a fundamental change in how ‘Care’ is perceived. This also is an exciting opportunity for those who love to innovate and offer most effective care options.
What’s more important is to drive all stakeholders viz. patients, health IT ISVs, governments/policy makers, healthcare providers and payers contribute towards this transformation. This is a key to save billions of dollars and also reduce burden on emergency services. Here’s a low down on what, why and how:
1. Firstly, patients need to understand it's in their interest to be part of this transformation and adopt proactive approach towards health 'Care'.
2. Health IT ISV's and health IT start-ups need to understand power of disruptive IT innovations and work with health ecosystem players to innovate solutions to enable this 'Cure to Care' transformation.
3. Role of government and policy makers is to incentivise and promote care approach with monetary and compliance level incentives for adopting this 'Cure to Care' transformation.
A few relevant examples are:
a) Obamacare, which is officially called as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is started by President Barack Obama. Also called the Affordable Care Act (ACA), it promises to curb health care spending, improve health care and health insurance. The act includes other Care Act provisions like expansion of Medicaid, and the opening of health insurance marketplaces to help subsidize private insurance. The act also regulates healthcare spending, insurance companies and healthcare standards.
b) Belgium Healthcare is a publicly-funded healthcare and social security system run by the federal government which organizes and regulates healthcare, independent private practitioners, public, hospitals and care institutions. Belgium government offers incentives and compliances that provide care through insurance governed by a central system. Whether employed or unemployed every citizen is registered and entitled for this compulsory social security and has access to subsidized or free health care.
c) New Zealand Health Ministry offers care support which is a subsidy funded by ministry that assists unpaid and full-time care to its citizens and public. The emphasis is on preventive health care aimed to improve health outcomes and quality of life of citizens.
4. Healthcare providers and payers must understand it's in their long term interest to reduce healthcare cost and service burden by adopting this 'Cure to Care' transformation and innovations in 'care'. For this to happen, however, the healthcare providers & payers will have to become more patient-centric. Offer patients with guidance, information and education.This transformation will enable those involved in the healthcare eco system and health care providers move away from a 'Cure' driven to a 'Care' driven health care system where patient-centered system is organized around what patients need.
It's high time all stakeholders in healthcare must shift their focus from 'Cure to Care' for the benefit of citizens and public. Journey to 'Care' (monitoring, prediction and prevention), over 'Cure' (assuring therapy adherence).