2023 Healthcare Trends
Our predictions for 2023 healthcare trends focus on reducing manual processes to improve staff retention and patient satisfaction. In addition, we also expect a greater expansion of retail primary care, which will require greater coordination of data. This year may finally deliver interoperability as retail clinics and patients demand less bureaucracy and faster diagnosis and treatment.
Focus on Data and Efficiency to Reduce Patient and Staff Burdens
As we discussed in our last blog, Referral strategies for specialty care clinics that reduce administrative work, medical practices do not have the staff to support inefficient processes that create more work for the practice and the patient. Moves toward greater efficiency will take the lead in 2023. Healthcare organizations will:
1. Increase patient engagement and improve the patient experience by adding more tools that reduce the need to verify insurance coverage, copays and prior authorization requirements.
- The AristaMD platform already offers insurance verification to those practices using its referral management service. The solution also indicates whether a specialist is in-network and nearby.
- eConsults services will continue to improve patient satisfaction by eliminating the need to visit a specialist to receive specialized diagnosis and treatment advice. eConsults allow PCPs to access recommendations from specialists in more than 70 specialties and sub-specialties within hours.
2. Lower the cost of specialty care by deploying technology. Since more offices are now paid using value-based care risk sharing, physicians are incentivized to improve outcomes while controlling for cost. At the same time, access to specialists is declining due to the physician shortage.
- Long, costly IT technology implementation will not help PCPs deploy value-based care quickly. Here again, we expect greater demand for eConsult services. Large practice groups, health plans and ACOs are evaluating the AristaMD platform because our eConsult solution can be deployed in weeks, not months. And return on investment (ROI) for eConsults is evident almost immediately. eConsults bring both monetary benefits for the patient and practice and quality benefits, like faster access to specialty care advice, fewer delays in diagnosis and less emergency department usage.
Retail Healthcare will Continue to Expand
As large companies, like Amazon, enter the market while traditional drug stores grow their footprint, changes to the primary care landscape will impact healthcare in 2023 in a number of ways:
1. Health equity will increase as access to a primary care provider becomes available in more locations. When combined with the support of ACA subsidies that expand insurance coverage, patients that were not able to visit a PCP due to cost or location will now use these services.
2. As more patients use retail clinics, access to data related to which specialists are in-network, nearby and available will be critical to the further expansion of retail healthcare. Like traditional primary care practices, these clinics will need to serve patients using Medicare, Medicaid and private coverage. The demands of the patient for in-network copays and the pressure of value-based care payment models, particularly from Medicare and Medicaid plans, will require Amazon, CVS and Walgreens, among others, to quickly search for specialists that can accept the patient’s insurance and schedule the patient soon.
3. Patients visiting retail clinics will demand speed and convenience. The value proposition for neighborhood primary care centers around customer satisfaction. These patients want to drop in unscheduled, see a physician immediately and quickly receive the care they need. As a result, digital healthcare, like eConsults, will grow. Video-based telehealth is complicated and inconvenient for low-income and elderly patients. Retail clinics will seek out solutions that allow the patient to access specialty care advice without:
- Appointment scheduling delays
- Multiple visits
- Complicated video calls
eConsults are the perfect solution. PCPs can consult with a specialist on behalf of the patient to address common, emergent conditions without transferring patient care. It’s convenient for the patient and profitable for the retail location.