What executives were talking about at the Health Evolution Summit and the Urgent Care Convention

Top healthplan executives see analytics in everyone’s future according to a roundtable discussion held during the 2018 Health Evolution Summit to trade insights about the future. Healthcare executives convened at a NextHealth Technologies event at the Summit to discuss the power of measurement and optimization as a key path to achieving sustainable cost savings.

Top takeaways offer insights into why a culture of measurement and optimization is becoming a critical core competency in today’s highly competitive environment. Healthplan executives are asking what it takes to build a culture of measurement that ultimately drives cost savings at scale.

Soon after the Summit, we also had the privilege of speaking to an engaged audience at the 2018 Urgent Care Convention. Urgent care professionals sought to know what works, make it better and demonstrate value faster for improved partnerships with healthplans and providers.

Here’s the roundup of advice that emerged from our conversations in both of these great venues.

Stop swinging for the fences and start getting on base

Too often the priority of the day drives conversation and attention, distracting executives from the hard work of incremental improvement. Innovation in healthcare means improvement first and foremost. There is tremendous discussion in the market around Amazon, CVS and Walmart. Yet these headlines are the exception rather than the rule. The more healthplans can focus on specific, incremental improvements the more they can deliver positive ROI. “We need to do a better job of delivering the right care at the right place at a lower cost,” noted Eric Grossman, CEO of NextHealth. Home runs are few and far between, usually higher risk and have a higher likelihood of attracting regulatory scrutiny.

We need to do a better job of delivering the right care at the right place at a lower cost.

Measurement is the backbone of competitive advantage

To get the small wins that add up to big wins, it takes a clear understanding of which programs are winners. One executive speaker noted that what gets measured gets done. Measurement is important because large employers demand it, and it’s a critical driver of sustainable competitive advantage. Measurement is how you drive impact in an organization.

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Improvement funds innovation

Innovation is not as important as improvement in terms of impact on the business. It is the work of continuous process improvement that funds innovation, not the other way around.

Sustainable cost savings starts at the top

To drive change, you need to start at the top. It’s essential that leadership teams establish a culture where analytics isn’t an afterthought. It’s how you prove the business case, how you know what works to reduce medical costs and how you can tell if you’re serving members with the best programs.

Prediction is not the same as measurement and optimization

Being able to predict that an outcome is likely to happen to a certain population is powerful. Yet, it’s not the end of the story. Measurement tells you what worked so you can optimize and scale around the specific outcomes that actually worked.

Overall, we believe that healthplans are poised to go beyond basic insights. By analyzing more data more scientifically and using advanced technology to do it, we can know what works sooner to reduce medical costs. This speeds the process for getting members into high-impact clinical programs faster. It’s time to look at why so many healthplans are adopting advanced measurement and optimization practices to get to this next level of results. Best practices from your peers are included in our latest research brief. Check it out.