Connecting Patients and Hospitals in a Post-pandemic Environment
Two external forces are buffeting hospitals and health systems across the country and accelerating their adoption of digital health technologies and virtual care delivery models. The first are nontraditional health care players who are offering digital health tools and independent virtual care options directly to consumers, bypassing the traditional continuum of care offered by hospitals and health systems. The second is the COVID-19 pandemic that has forced hospitals and health systems to quickly pivot to digital health tools like remote monitoring and virtual care models such as telemedicine to provide care to patients who don’t need — or don’t want — in-person care.
The dual pressures on hospitals and health systems create a host of challenges moving forward in a post-pandemic health care world. Among them are losing patients to nontraditional health care players, segmenting patient populations by clinical need and digital readiness, building and implementing digital health and virtual care models tailored to each of those segments and overcoming internal and external roadblocks such as managing change and payer reimbursement policies, respectively, to compete in the new health care economy. This executive dialogue explores the forces, challenges and solutions to defining and developing consumer-centered virtual care.