The US Healthcare systems are currently undergoing a major transformation. Government mandates such as the Accountable Care Act, increasing demand of an aging population and reduced reimbursement levels are fundamentally changing the way healthcare will be managed going forward. Patients are assuming greater accountability for their own health and the industry is moving to a model that aligns stakeholder incentives to be more proactive and wellness-focused. Healthcare providers, payers and suppliers that historically have been fragmented and conflicted are now exploring ways to collaborate and coordinate efforts to reduce costs while improving patient safety and healthcare quality.
Clearly, things needed to change and the market is beginning to respond. Collaborations between life science manufacturers, providers and industry experts are targeting chronic diseases to improve patient outcomes and, more so, their quality of lives by leveraging new and emerging technologies that reduce the cost of care. Smart phones, devices and products are leveraging wireless connectivity to seamlessly capturing patient data that is sent to the “cloud” where the entire care network, physicians, hospitals, patients, parents, children or friends, can view the information in real time and take more ownership in maintaining and improving their health. The vast amounts of data generated from all the patient devices is captured and distributed to each patient and can be easily accessed via mobile technologies like tablets or smart phones that allow patients to integrate the lifestyle changes into their daily life. Initial indications are very positive and with the rapid pace of change great improvements could be in our near future.
Further, the empowerment of the patient could and should have implications on the development and understanding of new drugs and products. As the volumes of patient reporting information is captured and tracked, patients, physicians, researchers and clinicians can review that data and begin correlating
the real world reactions of patients with the clinical data to ensure that the intended outcome of the drug or device is actually happening. This ongoing validation of the therapeutic outcome should help identify adverse reactions early in the process while also highlighting improved outcomes for patients around the globe. This could dramatically impact the learning curve and should provide the entire healthcare value chain, payers, providers, producers and patients, with improved insight and understanding about the real impact their drugs and devices are having on patients. This is truly a very exciting time for the
Health Sciences industry.