Let me start by getting the legalities out of the way: The following represents my views and opinions and does not reflect the position or opinions of the companies I worked or currently work for.
Ok. So that’s out of the way… why such an alarming title? We hear about many disruptions in several industries around us: The disruption of the Taxi industry with UBER, the Hotel industry and Airbnb, Purple and the mattress industry, Deliveroo and food delivery etc. so one is bound to think where is the next disruption going to be? There are two big candidates in my mind: Healthcare and Insurance.
In this article I will focus on Healthcare just because I find it more alarming and less talked about (in the right way that is). I strongly believe that we are talking about Market access and Affordability matters most of the time and do not realize that these are symptoms of the bigger change or disruption to come. To put it in simple terms market access issues and affordability are being currently addressed by many healthcare tech startups and the technology is finally here to make it happen at record speed. Add to that, governments’ budget pressures and needs and you find a very “tolerant and welcoming” environment to set up rules and speed up regulations that will facilitate the game for these new entrants. What used to be believed as one of the biggest barriers to entry for new players in healthcare, mainly regulation, will probably be their biggest ally. Of course we all knew that change was going to hit the Healthcare industry and I remember articles back in 2010 that talked about healthcare in 2020 etc… but what I believe that we are missing is that at this rate the disruption is not that far off and it is imminent. I would even dare to say that it has started! Advances in Artificial Intelligence has opened the door for startups developing home based diagnosis based solutions with predictive capabilities to advise you of potential health issues you will be facing, prototypes exist today to give you blood test results and fertility test results in the comfort of your home, Devices are becoming smaller, smarter and more inter-connected than ever etc…
How will this disruption manifest itself? My best guess will be in home care and the ability to avoid that whole first step of going to a physician to assess what is wrong with you and get an initial diagnosis. I believe that will be done at home moving forward and you would only need to go to the doctor for the next phase which is more related to treatments that you can’t necessarily do yourself at home… At least for now… The future? Perhaps your own Robot at home acting like your mini hospital capable of everything shy from a full bypass surgery. Suddenly Star Trek’s medical miracles are no longer far- fetched! The other disruption will manifest itself in patient management and the ability to continuously monitor your medical situation remotely and with minimal effort from both yourself and the physician: Diabetes management for example will be a thing of the past and Diabetics will finally be able to really live without worry. What is even more appealing is that these solutions will automatically address affordability and very quickly make it not only as the better solutions to traditional medical solutions and pathways but also the more affordable ones. Then there are the limitless applications and integration that you can think of with the fitness industry, the transportation industry, food industry, and the insurance industry.
It will be such a great World to live in… so why the alarming title? Well, that’s more addressed to the big old Healthcare companies out there… Business models need to adapt to this coming disruption. Companies should refocus their strategies to incorporate such a near future (I’m talking 3 years or less), leaders should consider what type of workforce to have, what type of alliances to build, what companies to acquire, where to innovate… There is a lot of work to be done but multinationals and big healthcare providers can be at the fore front of this change and disruption… It will be hard work! But, it has to start yesterday!
Please let me know your comments and opinions. Do you agree? Where do you see the next disruption hitting? When do you expect it to hit?