Disruptive innovations happen constantly in our lives, whether it is the latest smartphone or connection advancement (we are looking at you, 5G), 3D printing, or cryptocurrency.
Now it is time for disruptive innovation in healthcare to have its moment. For far too long, the delivery of healthcare has been complicated, expensive, and very disappointing to patients. Innovations in healthcare are shaking things up. Here are five of the hottest trends shaping the future of healthcare.
1. Direct Primary Care
Rather than deal with insurance in the traditional fee-for-service system, Direct Primary Care, or DPC for short, charges a membership fee instead. For as little as $70 a month, patients have unlimited 24/7 access to a participating primary care provider of their choice by text, email, or phone. It includes extended same- or next-day office visits. Diagnostic tests and other office procedures, such as EKGs, are included in the membership fee.
An example in a WebMD article on the topic describes how a patient called his DPC after a fall down some steps. Rather than go to the emergency room, the patient went directly to his DPC physician’s office and received a referral for an X-ray and was given pain meds in the office. The cost was less than $100. The article compared that to the $14,000 ($2,400 out of pocket) medical bill the patient received after a similar accident years earlier that involved the ER and a radiologist. This is a disruptive innovation in healthcare that could have a dramatic effect on how much the nation spends on healthcare.
2. Telecare Technologies
Before the pandemic, only 43% of healthcare providers offered telehealth options. Since the pandemic started, that number shot up to 95%, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
This rapid adoption of virtual medical services is a welcome disruptive innovation in healthcare that represents the future. To take it beyond an online office visit, newly introduced devices will advance remote patient care and monitoring.
Wearable biosensors are one example of innovative healthcare technology. These sensors can measure and transmit vital health information such as heart rate, respiratory data, and activity level.
This can allow doctors to detect patient deterioration quicker and act on it faster. Wearable tech helps patients keep better tabs on their health.
3. Electronic Health Records
Electronic health records (EHRs) have been a growing part of patient care. The adoption of EHRs allows doctors to share patient data across different healthcare networks. A comprehensive patient history empowers doctors to more accurately treat ailments and prevents over-prescribing medications. It also gives patients more control over their health through increased access to information.
EHR data can also be used to conduct research, improve care, build AI applications, and create new business opportunities.
4. AI and Machine Learning
From patient intake to predictive analytics, AI applications are everywhere in healthcare. AI applications can manage patient intake and scheduling as well as billing. Disruptive technology in healthcare like chatbots can answer basic patient questions. Natural language processing capabilities allow AI to collate and analyze survey responses. The data collected from these consumer insights will go a long way in improving the patient experience.
5. Patient-Centered Care
Patient-centered care is also the future of healthcare. The World Health Organization defines patient-centered care as “empowering people to take charge of their health rather than be passive recipients of services.” The basis of this strategy is that the input and experience of the patient can improve overall health outcomes. The eight principles of patient-centered care include:
- Coordination and integration of care
- Respect for patient values and preferences
- Physical comfort
- Information and education
- Emotional support
- Involvement of family and friends
- Continuity and transition
- Fast access to care
Patient-centered care can build a strong patient-provider relationship. This can be a motivator for preventive care. When patients feel respected and experience compassion from their providers, they are more likely to return for annual physicals, screenings, and immunizations.
Join a Disruptive Franchise in the Healthcare Industry
American Family Care (AFC) is a disruptive player in the healthcare industry. The urgent care franchise pioneered the concept of convenient, patient-centric healthcare. The brand celebrates its 40th anniversary as the nation’s leading provider of urgent care, accessible primary care, and occupational medicine. With more than 200 clinics and 600 in-network physicians caring for nearly 3 million patients a year, AFC is quickly expanding to meet the ever-growing demand for its quality healthcare services. Apply now to learn more about the opportunities with AFC.