Prescription for disruption

Prescription for disruption

Published by: Research Desk Released: Jan 26, 2020

The healthcare industry is at a crossroads. Costs continue to spiral upward, yet quality of care has, at best, held steady, and in some cases, has decreased. As a result, patient frustration with the healthcare experience has reached an all-time high.

What might explain this puzzling phenomenon? As medical knowledge increases and more money is invested into the healthcare system, why are we not seeing an improvement in outcomes? There are multiple causes. Many point to our aging population, and a corresponding increase in chronic diseases, as one of the contributing factors. Indeed, it is projected that by 2030, 60% of the Baby Boomer generation will be managing at least one chronic condition.1 Managing these diseases over an extended period of time represents a growing tax on the healthcare system.

Some point to an increase in paperwork and bureaucracy in the healthcare system as the root of the problem. One study found that nearly half of physicians’ time is currently spent on paperwork and EHR data entry, not on patient care.2 With less time to see patients, waiting times have increased, and patient frustration has grown.

Others point to the lack of financial accountability on behalf of the end-consumers: the patients. The argument is that since patients’ healthcare expenses are covered directly by their health insurer or by their government, they are less sensitive to cost, enabling prices to balloon.