Health Care Trend 2014
Part 2 “Integrate” should be the trend of health care development in 2014.
Health care is very much „in transition”. Have a quick look at the trends in health care 2014 . Now, try to predict what the outcomes will be of all these well intended developments?
Due to changes in structure of processes, organizations, patients’ journeys, devices, drugs, apps, telemonitoring – health care will run the risk of becoming highly fragmented, maybe even chaotic. Let’s hope that professionals and their patients still do know their way around.
Can this be prevented? As costs will drive change for the coming years, I guess not. Health care is fundamentally being transformed. Why? Because it has been righteously disrupted and it will take time before a new satisfactory system has emerged. Do we need to wait for that? No! We have to see how we can construe things in a more informed perspective.
First then, can we give a vision of future care? We have seen several experimental visions.
See for instance Windows or Kaiser Permanente . Great views, but especially inspired by technological and information developments. Informing, but „all-in” technologies are still to be construed.
Imagine, they need to be implemented, brought to practice, being used by persons with interests and emotions, professionals and patients, not just the innovator or early adopters. It is not a matter of technology alone.
Besides, visions don’t inform about how we need to develop.
But, there is a sure direction to give that constitutes the basic principle for moving forward: both because it is immanent to all needed developments to better care, and because it creates the opportunity to developments in oversee-able steps of change. Every party can draw its own choice on this to design a proper blue print to their process of change.
This principle directive is: Integrate, integrate, integrate.
Integration in care is about the unification of both parties and activities, aided by technology, devices, information and medications, to create better care for health and its outcomes.
Integration will lead to better connections of different partners who are needed for a specific path or process of care. It will stimulate collaboration and coordination of activities between them. They will aim for better outcomes and higher effectiveness of care. It will lead to opportunities for more efficient arrangements of expertise and allocation of capacity of care givers.
With the compound of the interests of the key players in care (and I mean of course, patients included), costs can be more rationally arranged and may lead to lowering prices of care per patient per year. Also, it will inspire higher transparency of processes and clarity to patients about details of the caring activities themselves.
There are three different kinds of integration. Each, open to start with. So, any party may pick and start its own game changer. Even any couple of parties as intended partners, may do so too. Choose the most easiest entry to your future development together and enjoy the ride!
The types of integration are:
1. Integration by Co-Operation
There are numerous ways of how different parties may work together to join their activities in the provision of better care. Vertical integration between hospital and family care regarding chronic care paths like COPD, diabetes or cardiovascular risk management. Also between rehabilitation and care at home, etc. The more unified, the better and sustainable outcomes can be achieved together. This integration may go through steps of increasing unification, hence allowing for building trust and insight into each others’ interests and routines. Insights that are needed to understand and build sustainable partnerships.
Steps to partnership might be:
Cooperate → Collaborate → Co-create → Partner..
Of course, these steps to integrate may lead internal change processes as much as external adjustment with (a) other parties. Mind you, the internal processes of change are often much tougher than the external ones..
2. Integration by Co-Creation.
As co-operation seems a familiar thing to do, as we are all working together in some way, it gets tougher when cooperative intentions are due to the heart of primary processes of organizations: the caring process itself. Multidisciplinary work is hard enough to perform within a care center. Working together in the same primary process with people from outside will need review of primary conditions to success. Although, methods of co-creation do fulfill that extra need to lift cooperation above “just working together.”
focus on building new processes or restructuring these, can be developed through such uncluttered steps like:
Outline current activities → Structure → Synthesize → Optimize
In this path of development, accommodating for interchange off and on-line, might rather easily be addressed. But, imagine the time needed to achieve such steps. These changes do not come easy or quickly. But at least, one may sketch the process of change and enable committed people to build trust in the way to go.
3. Integration by “Experience Co-Creation”.
Till this point, I left the issue of cooperation with patients as self-evident, but still implicit. Experience co-creation aims at designing care processes explicitly with patients’ needs as starting point. To enlighten it here, you can best think of “co-creating patients’ experience in care” allowing for all related partners to join in. Of course, with patients themselves.
Although it takes to know these methods to agree with this, still the starting point will not be too difficult to appreciate: patients first. If you feel up against this, why not do so. If you think, like me, this is what we ought to happen, just do too. Remember, human change and development, going beyond one’s proper interests, takes a bit more than just good intentions. Allowing for orientation to partners and for adopting internal change within organizations, might hint to a less bolder initiative than experience co-creation. Although, believe me, methods of “experience co-creation” are suited to accommodate for those concerns. It is your proper choice that decides, I would say. Aiming at “participatory care”, or “enabling patient self management”, are definite objects of development that will flourish by “experience co-creating” methods.
Steps to go through, might sound like these:
Select path of care → Pilot → Build on successful small steps;
and: Get together → get to understand each other → structure and redesign.
Experience with these approaches demonstrates participants to be pleasantly surprised by a lot of new insights into interests’ of other parties never known before and get highly motivated by it. A motivation that is so needed in contexts of disruption.
Is there a boundary to some parties as opposed to preferences for those that might bound in collaboration better? No. In fact, co-creative partnership may emerge from any couple of parties. And I mean “any”. Between caregivers and industries alike as between caregivers, and between patients and all.
For that very reason, I am convinced that we may get forward better when the directive of integration is the principle to follow-up for innovation and development of better care.
It should be the trend for 2014, don’t you think?
Integration Thought Lab
Of course, to some this may all be cryptic. Why don’t you connect with me to allow me to inform you about the do’s and don’ts. Why not do a thought lab on this, “bootcamp” if you will,
– to understand meanings and specific opportunities to you and your colleagues;
– to discuss pros and cons of concrete initiatives;
– and to quick start your own concrete initiative.
Get in touch 😉 Thanks!