The Future of Healthcare Report gave a unique view into an industry in the midst of a transformation. To gain this insight, HIMSS, along with its Trust partners—Accenture, The Chartis Group and ZS—surveyed more than 2,700 stakeholders, including patients, clinicians, health systems and payer organizations during March and April of 2021. The report focused on three main areas—digital health, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), and financial health. The healthcare insights that emerged suggest substantial changes ahead.
For digital health, the pandemic accelerated the transition to digital health, and stakeholders plan to continue investing in digital health. Of the health systems surveyed, 58% plan to invest $10 million or more in digital health programs. Clinicians agree that digital health tools are here to stay and see a potential for growth. This aligns with patients’ views, of whom, half are in favor of having only telehealth visits. And payers anticipate four key stakeholders—health startups/new players, big tech companies, biopharma/device manufacturers and providers—will drive digital health adoption.
Industry players are watching with interest as AI/ML-reliant healthcare applications emerge. Health systems generally see the benefits to AI/ML over the downsides and patients are in line, sharing that they see AI/ML improving healthcare by 2025. For clinicians, they expect to see both clinical and administrative benefits in implementing AI/ML. And payers expect clinical and claims operations to have the highest level of AI/ML involvement in the future.
Healthcare stakeholders diverge somewhat when it comes to their sense of the financial health trends that will affect the industry in the coming years. Health systems expect value-based care arrangements to increase modestly. More than half of payers believe major healthcare payment reforms are very likely. While clinicians want to see change in reimbursement to help improve their financial situation. For patients, there are gaps to close in meeting their expectations for pricing transparency.
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In the Future of Healthcare Report, HIMSS and its Trust partners—Accenture, The Chartis Group and ZS—share insights on the trends and challenges that have defined the past year and how they will impact the future.