Repeal or Not, Healthcare is Headed to the Home

Published January 25, 2017

The disruption that has shaken our healthcare system in recent years is nothing compared to the enormous changes that lie ahead. While much is still up in the after the Obama administration exited and the Trump administration entered, there are some things that aren’t up for debate.

  • First, by 2050, adults aged 65 or older will number nearly 89 million, more than double the number in 2010. More than a quarter of all Americans and two of three older Americans have multiple chronic conditions, and treatment for this population accounts for 66 percent of the country’s healthcare budget.
  • Second, the number of households headed by someone aged 65+ will grow from 29.9 million in 2015 to 49.6 million in 2035, and the number of those older households with a disability will increase to 31.2 million by 2035, a 76 percent increase from 2015.
  • Third, connected technology and predictive analytics are helping to improve patient care transitions from hospital to home.

There are forces greater than any one administration or president driving today’s healthcare system transformation from volume to value. Although it was the government that accelerated the value marathon relay (yes, marathon relays exist!) with incentives like those created to reduce hospital readmissions via the ACA, the home healthcare industry now has the opportunity to share the load by taking the baton.

Despite the progress that’s been made, we still have a long way to go. Survival in a value-based world means not only does the technology need to change, so do the underlying operational processes. And the diverse and fragmented home health care sector, with the majority of players working in tandem vs. concert, is part of the problem.

The real question is, could intensive care that normally requires hospital admission, ever be well managed in a patient’s home? Maybe so – but it all starts with a patient’s discharge from the hospital.

There is evidence that successful transitions most often include not only improved hospital discharge planning, but they also extend beyond hospital walls to include home healthcare management. Not to mention the fact that, providers are looking for partners that can help give their patients the right care, at the right time and in the right setting. Payers are looking for partners that can help contain costs with solutions for patient engagement and supervision. And older adults want access to the people and services that can help them better understand their treatment plans, manage their health and stay at home.

Solutions and services that enable accountable care at home is this partner.