In a recent MedCity News article, I shared that growing consumer demands for convenience and digital self-service have created opportunities for health systems to accelerate innovation that closes the gap between expectation and reality for people searching for care. And consumer-centered solutions to meet these demands were abundantly displayed by health tech leaders—including Kyruus—earlier this month at the HIMSS Global Health Conference & Exhibition in Orlando, so it’s clear that healthcare consumerism is top-of-mind—and here to stay.
In many of our recent blogs, we have talked about the disruption the pandemic has caused in healthcare, how it has changed the healthcare landscape, and reshaped the patient journey. With many organizations having already pivoted (and some continuing to do so), the conversation has become “what’s next?” Though COVID-19 cases remain high in many areas, now is the time to start thinking about recovery and what it could look like.
From fighting COVID-19 to deploying telehealth platforms rapidly, the last 12 months have certainly presented the healthcare industry and those that work in it with a number of new – and unpredictable – challenges. However, the last 12 months have also been full of learnings and growth, teaching organizations how to drive greater alignment when executing strategic initiatives and engage with consumers in new and innovative ways.
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Without question COVID-19 has caused incredible disruption to industries across the board, with the healthcare sector experiencing some of the greatest challenges. At the same time, however, the pandemic has been a catalyst for rapid innovation, revealing opportunities to rethink and transform approaches to care delivery and access. From learning to operate remote call centers to looking for more digitally-enabled ways to engage with patients (e.g., virtual care, virtual assistants), the pandemic has pushed health systems to reimagine—and quickly—their approaches to enabling patient access.
How to read this graph: The bars illustrate the total number of searches for a term (e.g. diabetes) over the month via the Kyruus ProviderMatch platform and the heatmap breaks the data out by week. While people across the world have had to adjust their lives in the face of the coronavirus crisis, hospitals, health systems, their staff, and the patients turning to them for care have undoubtedly felt the greatest impact. Healthcare organizations face the tough task of not only caring for the influx of patients needing assessment and care for coronavirus, but also ensuring they effectively facilitate care for patients in their communities with non-COVID-related medical needs, such as chronic conditions, mental health, and cancer.
Earlier this week we were fortunate to host some of the country’s pre-eminent thought leaders at what was our sixth Annual Thought Leadership on Access Symposium (ATLAS). This year’s theme was “Expanding Boundaries. Removing Barriers.” “Expanding Boundaries” let us explore inspiring ways health system leaders are innovating around patient access and responding to industry dynamics, which increasingly point to a shift in care delivery outside of the walls of health systems.