Healthcare in 5 years: What is hard to imagine today but will be normal then?

Technology is driving rapid change in healthcare delivery, and systems are working overtime to keep up. But some CIOs on the forefront are thinking differently about what they'll need today to stay ahead of the curve.


At a panel during the Becker's Healthcare 13th Annual Meeting in early April, the following health system executives shared their perspectives during a keynote panel:

  • B.J. Moore, CIO and executive vice president of real estate at Providence in Renton, Wash.
  • Chris Carmody, System Vice president of UPMC IT division and chief technology officer of UPMC
  • Ben Patel, CIO of Cone Health in Greensboro, N.C.

Note: responses are lightly edited for clarity and length.

Question: Healthcare is changing quickly and innovation is moving at a rapid pace. What do you think will be commonplace three to five years from now that's hard to imagine today?

Ben Patel: Citizen-led innovation. Today, with the advent of hyperscale computing, one of the things that is happening is more top-down transformation of digital and innovation. What we truly need and we'll see it happening is more and more democratization of technology. The digital transformation is happening among our employees, caregivers and staff. Next we'll see much more citizen-led innovation, and that's what we need.

BJ Moore: Healthcare basically missed the last 20 years of innovation and consumerization, like what Expedia, Uber or Amazon have done. I hope that we're not trying to catch up with the whole innovation process. My hopeful prediction is that we missed the consumerization wave, but maybe we'll showcase this generative AI wave and three to six years from now people will look at healthcare and say it has really integrated generative AI into the patient experience and caregiver productivity, and the way we automate work.

Let's not try to catch up on those 20 years that we missed out on; that train has already left the station. Let's focus on the new wave of technology and how we can really embrace it. In five years other industries could say, 'Healthcare really embraced generative AI; how do we catch up to healthcare?'

I know it sounds optimistic, but that's our only path forward. Catching up for the last 20 years is not a winning strategy.

Chris Carmody: I'm going to oversimplify it. Three to five years from now, I hope and dream that all these technology investments, all the hard work we have put in over the years really makes a measurable difference. I hope we truly have moved the needle for every individual that seeks care, every population we serve so we have gotten rid of the social determinants of health and make healthcare equitable with equal access.

Just overcoming all these challenges from basic human needs of getting health and being healthy, is why we're all doing this. Why are we making all these technology investments? It's to change the outcome for every individual, and we should see those measurable investments, not just in the return on investment. We want to extend someone's life in a healthy way and cure diseases; what if we could use generative AI to actually cure cancer.

That's what I would love to see with the use of technology.

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


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars