Digitization of the Healthcare Industry Part 1 – Core Drivers and Obstacles to Adoption
In this session, Dr Christian Reich provides an overview of how the management of data in the Healthcare industry has evolved over the years from billing and administrative applications to patient tracking, medical records and laboratory data applications. Throughout this process there have been numerous barriers to adoption and integration of information management applications – from incentives and business models to challenges around poor user interfaces, entrenched practices and processes, competing standards and lack of defined infrastructure. The industry is driven by higher costs – the greater the costs, the greater the revenue and higher corresponding profits for all parties – from insurance companies (higher premiums and payouts) to providers (higher top line revenue).
With the current models and drivers, we are on a path to health care costs becoming up to 35% of gross domestic product by 2050. This means that one third of the entire economy will be healthcare related. This is clearly unsustainable. There are high expectations that information technology will solve many of the problems around the cost of healthcare. However, numerous obstacles to adoption exist.
We’ll discuss various programs that are addressing challenges including:
- Stimulus funds devoted to EHR adoption
- Office of The National Coordinator for Healthcare IT
- Interoperability standards programs
- National Health Information Network
- The Healthcare Information Technology Standards Panel
The session will explore the need for consistent terminology and data to support efforts to improve quality, support evidence based medicine, improve clinical trials data and to realize the future promise of personalized medicine.