There is a new and rapidly changing healthcare landscape globally, where digital technologies are becoming increasingly normalized into the everyday delivery of healthcare. Alongside changes within hospitals and clinics, there is a growing consumer-based movement. This creates both top-down and bottom-up momentum for change.
The diversity of different tools and how they interact can be hard to comprehend. Figure 1 provides a high-level overview of the future digital landscape. Patient-facing technologies are at the center, reflecting the impact that this new ecosystem of self-monitoring and decision support will have on their experience and quality of care.
Other technologies are broadly categorized as professional-facing and organization facing depending on their primary user and value in enhancing individual patient care or improving care systems. The electronic health record straddles the system as a whole, reflecting the pivotal role it plays in any digital strategy. It is the foundation upon which many of the other applications are built.
Navigating this new landscape is challenging for organizations and their leaders and there are many pitfalls. There is no doubt, however, that technological transformation will be one of the major differentiators between successful and unsuccessful providers over the next decade. The pressures of cost and expectations of quality mean that doing nothing is not a sustainable option. This report aims to help healthcare organizations grasp the biggest opportunities to significantly improve outcomes, experience and efficiency.
While the design and development of digital healthcare technologies is still predominantly taking place in western nations, emerging markets are adopting and adapting many of these innovations at an ever-growing speed and increased scale at a lower unit cost. This raises the possibility of a global convergence of digital healthcare capabilities, with nimble systems ‘leapfrogging’ the established infrastructure and delivery models of richer nations.