UnitedHealth CEO: Tech will drive value-based care in 10 years

CEO of UnitedHealth Group David Wichmann thinks health technology — within 10 years — will be the solution to the United States' rising healthcare costs, he said in an interview with CNBC's Jim Cramer, host of "Mad Money."

Technology shows the most promise in streamlining healthcare's push to value-based care models, which in turn will lead to a more efficient healthcare system, he added. According to Mr. Wichmann, the company's five focus areas — healthcare delivery, pharmaceutical services, consumer-centric benefits, digitizing health information and global access — are its key efficiency drivers.

UnitedHealth is leveraging its health tech business, Optum, to improve efficiencies. Optum holds the data of about "200 million people on the administrative side, and then another 100 million or so in terms of medical records," he said.

"That is used by us for artificial intelligence, machine learning, advancing ... technologies broadly in healthcare and making a difference on the predictive values of understanding who may get sick and under what circumstances we need to help them with their care," Mr. Wichmann explained.

"If you look forward to the future, call it seven, eight, nine, 10 years out, I think you're going to see the real strong implications of technology on helping to curtail healthcare costs," Mr. Wichmann told CNBC.

More articles on health IT:
Former Google CEO Dr. Eric Schmidt shares his vision for the medical visit of the future
Where are CIOs overinvesting their time and resources? 36 answers from industry experts
4 thoughts on 2018 health IT trends from former ONC head Dr. Vindell Washington

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