The Disruptive Side of the Innovation Equation in Healthcare Delivery: Healthcare Practice Post-Pandemic and How to Transform

The Disruptive-Side-of-the-Innovation-Equation-in-Healthcare-Delivery
Dr Peter Wilton

Dr Peter Wilton

Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley

The developments of the past twelve months have presented almost all organisations, even the most successful, with unprecedented challenges to their sustainability and prosperity.  Nowhere is this more apparent than in healthcare. Whilst there is light at the end of the tunnel, the pandemic has illustrated the continuing importance of innovating to adapt to a new normal.  Indeed, with the viability of many organisations’ business and operating models in question, never has there been a more important time to rethink these models in order to sustain the organisation’s relevance and value to its key stakeholders.  Now is the time to “hack the crisis”.

Much has been written in recent months about COVID as the great disruptor. It is important to not lose sight of the fact that disruption in healthcare has and is occurring and COVID is in many respects simply contributing to the acceleration of this.

There are also other factors at play outside of healthcare such as the continued democratisation of information and the sifting sands of trust in institutions and experts. The most enduring and important relationship to be considered is that of clinician and patient.

Looking beyond the impacts of COVID, leaders today are faced with two enduring challenges that potentially threaten the strategic resilience of their businesses:

  1. How can the organisation continue to sustain and reinvent its core business and operating model that defines its current relevance and value with stakeholders?
  2. How can the organisation simultaneously identify, shape, and capture new stakeholder value opportunities that position the organisation for sustained relevance and leadership in a rapidly evolving future: i.e., how can the organisation position itself effectively for future value transformation or disruption?

In healthcare, a number of seismic shifts in how the sector will operate and engage with its stakeholders in the future are well under way.  Among these shifts are the growing role and effectiveness of alternative delivery models based upon:

  • Smart Care: precision medicine, robotics, medical printing, etc, that are making healthcare smarter and more personalized.These models are driving a shift in the core role of future healthcare systems away from the paradigm of “diagnose and treat” to “predict, prevent, and manage” utilising data ecosystems that integrate clinical, genetic, and real-world data around powerful predictive modelling;
  • Care Anywhere: shifting care delivery towards non-clinical, real-world, environments to broaden access to health care and increase capacity within the health care system;
  • Empowered Care: new digital tools giving individuals powerful tools to play an active role in managing their health and well-being;
  • Intelligent Health Enterprises: data-driven healthcare centred around accessible intelligence, connected providers/workers, and intelligent devices;

Underlying and enabling these broad shifts in the structure and effectiveness of the healthcare system are specific innovations defining entirely new categories of value and ways of operating in healthcare, including:

  • Me and My Data
  • Continuous Monitoring
  • Connected Homes
  • Connected Care
  • Auto Patient Access
  • Virtual Care Circles
  • Virtual Care Teams
  • Retail Clinics
  • Intelligent Treatments
  • Intelligent Machines & Devices (IoT)
  • Augmented Wayfinding
  • Coordinated, Patient-Centred, Healthcare Ecosystems
  • Omnichannel Patient Experience
  • Seamless Financing

These shifts have implications for all stakeholders within the healthcare system, including health care providers, consumers, payers, regulators/government, suppliers, and society at large.  The implications are not simply technological.   They touch the entire spectrum of organizational future-readiness capabilities, including vision, operating model, innovation, agility, culture structure, governance and leadership, to name only a few.

Dr Wilton will be a key presenter at our inaugural Alumni Innovation Dinner Briefing. In this forum, we will share examples of emerging healthcare delivery platforms, and discuss what they mean for healthcare professionals, their organisations, and the future of the healthcare sector.


This article contains general information only and is not intended to constitute financial advice. Any information provided or conclusions made, whether expressed or implied, do not take into account individual circumstances. It should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional advice.

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