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EY: Digital Transformation of Health Services Is Indispensable

EY: Digital Transformation of Health Services Is Indispensable

The health care sector is becoming more consumer-centric, participatory, outcomes-based and cost-efficient, but lags in introducing automation and enablement technologies. This is according to New Horizons 2019: An EY NextWave Health Report, that explores the shift from reimagining the health ecosystem of tomorrow to executing on that vision.

The report highlights that investors and policymakers believe the future of health lies with technology. Responding to this, private equity investors are increasingly funding health technologies, physician practice management and outpatient specialty areas, including urgent care and home health care. Between 2014-18, health care expanded its share of total private equity deals in the US from 8.3% to 12.2%. In fact, one in seven private equity firms made at least one health care investment in 2018, with a focus in clinical efficiency and regulatory compliance.

Additionally, the report found that only one in four consumers view their health system as innovative compared with other digitally transformed industries such as retail or banking. In general, health care lags other industries in introducing digital technologies for both consumers and physicians, with only 25% of Netherlands consumers and 21% of physicians in England rating their health care systems as performing well.

In the long-term the value for health companies will not necessarily be in owning data, but in the relationships and access to ever-larger data pools that allow algorithms and insights to be created. These in turn will shape health outcomes in ways that matter to consumers, payors and other health stakeholders. To build the connected health ecosystem of tomorrow, an open IT infrastructure is necessary, that connects all these stakeholders and supports the frictionless, permission-based flow of information. This infrastructure, together with open source data standards, that go beyond application programming interfaces and clinical data models, are essential precursors to our view of the emerging, participatory health, world in which we live.

Commenting on the report findings, Charalambos Constantinou, Partner and Head of Advisory Services of EY Cyprus commented:  “The digital revolution and the sheer volume of data now available is drastically changing the health care ecosystem. Health care organizations will need to build, buy or partner on IT solutions that will allow frictionless data sharing among stakeholders, including consumers, who own the data, and businesses that provide the tools that capture it. Above all, they will need to become more agile and pursue deep-seated cultural change.”

To read New Horizons 2019: An EY NextWave Health Report, click here.

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