The Positive Disruption Happening in Today’s Healthcare World

After billions of investment in the space, we now have seen several bona-fide IPOs, multiple commercial stage companies acquired, and evidence of digital healthcare companies positively impacting scores of patients. Even with all of this exuberance, most of us believe that the field of digital healthcare is still nascent.

The graying of America, the expense of expanding per capita disease burden, and new payment models are driving innovation in not only care itself, but in its administration and distribution. Digital healthcare is proving its worth as both a fruitful clinical and economic endeavor within the US healthcare system.

This week, I will be speaking and serving as Chairman at the Digital Healthcare Innovation Summit in Boston. This year’s Summit is our attempt to capture the critical perspectives and debates surrounding the field’s progress in 2015.

The conference will include keynote addresses given by Larry Renfro, CEO of Optum, and Jonathan Bush, CEO of AthenaHealth. Both of these industry leaders stand at the forefront of change in American healthcare and will discuss the positive disruption happening in today’s digital healthcare world. Throughout the day, other speakers will dive deeper into many top trends and innovations that are transforming the space.   I am particularly interested in hearing their views on the following topics:

Fee For Service vs. Value Based Care

A key debate within the US healthcare market that directly impacts digital health is the balance, or the move from a fee for service model to value based care.   We are clearly in the midst of a storm. We will explore this and more in our thematic discussion on value based care. The management of populations is rapidly driving myriad of changes within provider organizations and with the new Medicare commitment to chronic care management “fee for service population health” is born as the younger sibling to value based care. Leaders from Evolent, Health Catalyst, and Partners Healthcare will help unravel the dichotomy of providing care to different types of patient populations.

Analytics and (more importantly) Insight

With analytics leading us to the knowledge of what to do to whom and when (some call this clinical decision support built on analytics), provider organizations are now adopting care team based technologies to help clinicians deliver that care in an evidence based and coordinated manner, both within and outside of the walls of hospitals. In this context, we will explore the rising adoption of analytics and CDS solution and ‘last mile’ care coordination solution that bring analytics to the front lines of patient care. The CEOs of Explorys, and TigerText will provide their perspectives on the manner in which analysis results in insight that then ends up improving patient care on the front lines.

Digital Therapeutics and Digital Diagnostics

Digital diagnostics and therapeutics are being used with patients to derive real, measurable, and clinical value. Success in these fields has already led to the creation of a digital health reimbursement model in both the diagnostics and therapeutics spaces that may likely become blueprints for the field. The CEOs of iRhythm, a digital health diagnostic service, and Omada Health, a digital therapeutic in the diabetes space will help us explore this new world.

Employer and Consumer Driven Healthcare

As consumer directed health plans take force, employers and consumers, more than ever, are becoming the institutions driving consumers to choose healthcare options. The ‘high deductible’ or ‘catastrophic’ plan puts the burden of most of consumption back onto the consumer. Telemedicine enabled by Doctor On Demand, onsite employer primary care with Crossover Health and pricing transparency solutions and consumer purchasing tools have a big role to play in this new environment.

Software Eats Biopharma

Software is changing how innovation and commercialization occurs in one of the largest segments of therapeutic innovation in healthcare – biopharma. From the R&D pipeline to the medical affairs office and finally to commercial teams, biopharma companies are adopting software to improve efficiency in a market with significant downward pricing pressure. Zephyr Health, Comprehend, and Veeva are redefining the biopharma space with software that improves efficiency.

If necessity is the mother of invention, we are beginning to see the fruits of both investment and invention creation in digital health companies. I am looking forward to opening the door on this year’s conversation.

The Summit is privileged to have a robust group of Sponsors for which we are grateful. We have digital health leaders from Goodwin Proctor, Korn Ferry, Leerink, Silicon Valley Bank, American Well, GE Healthcare, Athena Health, and PA Consulting. The Summit advisory board contains some of the most active members of the digital health investment community and includes investors from Bessemer, Cardinal Partners, Cerner Ventures, Google Ventures, Kleiner Perkins, NEA, Norwest, Rock Health and Leerink Partners.

To follow the conversation at the Digital Healthcare Innovation Summit, check out #DHIS15 or @DHISummit on Twitter.

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