Transforming healthcare: global experts on 'What Works' in healthcare

Transforming healthcare: global experts on 'What ...

KPMG presents the results of the forum organised to identify barriers and review factors for success in achieving effective healthcare transformation. 65 healthcare leaders, from 30 countries across six continents took part in the event.

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Challenges facing the healthcare sector are well known, yet governments and private sector organizations struggle with how to make meaningful change that will deliver sustainable healthcare – high quality care at an affordable cost.


To create a foundation for meaningful change, KPMG International brought together 65 healthcare leaders, from 30 countries across six continents in a unique forum to identify barriers and review factors for success in achieving effective healthcare transformation. Citing high performance organizations in Japan, India, South Africa, UK and US, the report, titled 'Staying Power -- Success stories in global healthcare', identifies four key principles underlying healthcare transformation, and five practical ways to make change happen.


I. Not just closer to home, but care at home


"Most health systems have bought into the idea of moving care out of hospitals and into the community, but few have made the next leap towards true, home-based care," says Dr. Mark Britnell, Chairman, Global Health Practice, KPMG International and Partner, KPMG in the UK. "Hospital care for the old and chronically ill is unsustainable, and just shifting patients to local primary and community facilities would overload these resources. New care models, like Singapore's integrated health system, start with the patient at the center and work onwards from there."


II. Engaged people deliver value


"Clinical staff are the power behind healthcare delivery, so any attempt at transformation needs their full engagement," says Dr. Britnell. "Employees' commitment to care is stronger than their desire for financial reward."


Healthcare organizations should engage staff in the creation of change programs and give people an active role in the creation and delivery of the organization's vision. The report points to a home care organization in the Netherlands, which empowered its nurses and leveraged technology to provide a full range of care to patients and saw improved productivity, reduced costs and greater employee engagement as a result.


III. Change is not a one organization show


Effective transformation can rarely be confined to a single healthcare organization. Alliances, partnerships and networks are increasingly blurring of boundaries between multiple providers.


Dr. Britnell says, "In developing countries such as India, entirely new models are emerging, showing the value of taking a unified approach across a wide variety of locations and partners to achieve a higher and more consistent level of care, as well as economies of scale."


In such models, most healthcare is delivered close to home by general practitioners and carers in the vicinity of the patient, with the support of e-health or telemedicine. Patients are only referred to hospitals when care in and around the home is no longer appropriate. Dr. Britnell says, "From the start of any admission to a care provider, the intention should be to get the patient to return home as quickly as possible," says Dr. Britnell.


IV. Patients are the solution, not the problem


What other industries have long recognized – and what healthcare is at last waking up to – is that an active customer is a force for positive change. Like retailers and media companies, healthcare organizations can use consumer feedback as a vital source of research and ideas.


"A more engaged patient is also able to play a bigger part in his or her own care, which can ultimately lead to significant cost savings," says Dr, Britnell. "Heathcare organizations need to recognize the power of patients to drive new ways of care and help health systems improve quality and reduce costs."


Based on the stories of success heard at the conference, organizations that break down boundaries and authentically partner with patients and their communities create more value by producing superior quality at affordable costs.


"The ability to build care pathways across and between home, primary, community and secondary care seems to offer new possibilities for accountable care and population health," says Dr. Britnell.

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