Attendees of the Executive Experience at HFMA’s ANI 2017 found the format highly conducive to networking and exchanging information regarding how to establish value-based partnerships. Jacques Mulder, U.S. Health Sector Leader at EY, which sponsored the event, described the engagement from the senior healthcare leaders in attendance as energizing.
“It was really rich in content and reinforced the point that we’re all focused on this as a common goal,” he said. “We know that we need to move the agenda forward, and it was really encouraging to see that much senior-level support and passion behind the cause of delivering better health care and a better working world.”
Conversations focused on putting the patient at the center of the healthcare continuum and delivering high-quality care that will affect health at the population level. “We took a look at the whole patient experience and the way that providers and insurers will become competitive, with patients exercising choice in the type of health care that they receive and the manner in which they receive it,” Mulder recalled. “The patient experience and the quality of that experience will be a huge determinant of competition in the future, but I believe it’s also the fueling power behind the energy that will drive our healthcare costs down and our healthcare quality up. So, the patient experience is a big one.”
Another topic of discussion that stood out to Mulder was the digitization of the enterprise amid the need to find innovative ways to engage with consumers. “We have to find different ways of outreach while embracing the growth and development in technology—not only to give us more contact with the patient and the consumer, but also to enhance their ability to interact with the healthcare system overall,” Mulder said.
“Very closely tied to that, we are on a relentless focus to bring operational efficiency and performance optimization into the delivery of health care. What that may mean is a dramatic shift as we move from volume into a selection of those things that deliver the most value and the highest-quality outcomes, and, very specifically, keep patients healthy in their day-to-day lives in the population.”
This approach requires expansive views about health care and payment for services. “Suddenly, things like clean water, access to good meals, or maybe access to a microwave oven to prepare those meals are as important in some ways as the next drug or the next diagnostic test that the patient may get,” Mulder said.
Another focus of discussion was the risk of cyber attacks. “Cyber risk becomes a greater concern for everyone, and, therefore, we have to be ever-diligent in the way that we treat, protect, de-identify, and really embrace the personal privacy of patients and consumers as far as their personal health information,” Mulder said.
“There’s a whole line of work around the ownership of health information. Setting up health care in the home and outside of a large institution like a hospital, or at least a minimizing the stay, is a trend that I don’t believe is going to change in the near future, and healthcare entities need to focus on ways to minimize breaches in these environments.”
He added that getting healthcare stakeholders to embrace new models of care delivery and payment, with a real focus on the patient and on health and wellness at the population level, is an aspirational goal. “It’s something that I believe we will achieve,” he said. “I felt very confident leaving the meeting that there’s enough energy and focus around this that we will solve this problem over time.”
“We all share the responsibility for wellness, and that’s one of the themes that came out,” Mulder added. “I saw the number of ‘aha’ moments and light bulbs going off, saying, ‘If we could do this together, that would be great.’ I walked away with a very good experience and being really encouraged about the future.”