What health system digital execs expect next from Best Buy in healthcare

Best Buy isn't just the place where you buy big-screen TVs and computers. It also provides technology that might one day help take care of you or a loved one at home.

The company has been drawing the attention of hospitals and health systems, some of which have begun partnering with the tech retailer to treat patients in the comfort of their homes. Innovation and digital chiefs told Becker's they're keeping a close eye on what Best Buy does next.

"There is a lot to like about Best Buy's foray (hopefully an understatement) into healthcare," said Richard Zane, MD, chief innovation officer of Aurora, Colo.-based UCHealth. "As a company expert in consumer technology as well as navigating homes with Geek Squad and their recent acquisition of Current Health, they may be 'the company' able to provide the important link to literally get into the home so healthcare can be delivered. More to come … we hope."

The deal for remote patient monitoring company Current Health, completed in 2021, cost Best Buy $400 million. But it's been paying dividends as Best Buy Health now partners with several of the largest health systems on hospital-at-home programs, including Charlotte, N.C.-based Atrium Health, New York City-based NYU Langone Health, New York City-based Mount Sinai Health System and Danville, Pa.-based Geisinger.

"What makes Best Buy's entrance into healthcare as compelling as it is logical is that it leverages three things at which the company has traditionally excelled: They sit at the nexus of consumer engagement, advanced logistics and identification as a provider of client-friendly technology," said Thomas Graham, MD, chief innovation and transformation officer of Kettering (Ohio) Health. "Through their Current Health partnership, they appear poised to explore a comprehensive contemporary redefinition of what connected health-at-home could become."

Tony Ambrozie, senior vice president and chief digital and information officer at Coral Gables-based Baptist Health South Florida, said disruptors coming from outside of healthcare, such as Best Buy and Amazon, will have a "steep learning curve" in the industry, with its diminishing physician pool caring for an aging population.

"This is a challenge for everybody, but maybe a competitive advantage for tech companies, if they figure out how to apply their better technology to newer care models, including ambulatory for increasing-acuity procedures — beyond just primary care — but especially for [artificial intelligence]-enabled remote patient monitoring and ultimately care at home, avoiding the exorbitant costs of hospitals," he said. "If they manage to be successful at these two models, they have a decent chance at succeeding long term."

Copyright © 2024 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars