After a decade of immense healthcare innovation, the future is bright entering 2020. Understanding upcoming healthcare trends can help healthcare organizations stay abreast of important changes and prepare for the future. Take a look at some of the key trends expected to dominate the next year:
EMR interfaces and workflows will find much needed improvements
EMR adoption is still on the rise according to recent reports, and it is not expected to slow down. Today, the idea of a clinic or hospital not using digital records is almost unimaginable. However, despite the proliferation of EMR systems today, there are still many hurdles to overcome. One of the most wildly discussed challenges for healthcare organizations is the user-friendliness and ease of use of their systems.
Vendors and providers alike are working to find solutions to this problem, ranging from introducing new integrations to improving EMR workflows. Studies have shown that eliminating unnecessary steps in EMR workflows can lead to about a 20% improvement in efficiency. At the same time, EMR companies still need to make changes to their interfaces that will improve the user experience. Forward-thinking EMRs like Epic, Cerner and athenahealth have already introduced mobile applications to meet the needs of providers. More changes are expected to occur in 2020.
New technology will be key in combating physician burnout
Improved technology in healthcare is important not just for the well-being of patients, but also the mental health of physicians. Over the past few years, the number of physicians reporting burnout (a reaction to stress which is often marked by exhaustion), depersonalization, and a lack of personal accomplishment, has been on the rise. A 2019 Medscape report showed that 44% of physicians have experienced burnout throughout their career.
Many factors contribute to burnout, but 59% of physicians attribute it to an overload of bureaucratic tasks including charting and paperwork. New technologies that streamline workflows like documentation and reimbursement processes are expected to help physicians overcome this burden. Currently, solutions are in development that will leverage AI to automate the documentation of patient encounters and reduce the need for secondary billing justifications and redundancies. Other healthcare-focused technologies that promote efficiency and ease of use are also expected to grow in popularity.
Price transparency will develop alongside value-based care
Over the last decade, value-based care has emerged as a leading healthcare payment model that shifts medical providers’ reimbursement from a fee-for-service model to fee-for-value. Healthcare payments are tied to quality and effectiveness of care rather than the act of performing tests and procedures. Physicians are recognized and compensated for excellent care, and patients save money by only seeing a doctor when necessary.
In 2020 and beyond, this trend is expected to offer further price transparency for both physicians and patients. The value-based model has long been held back due to a lack of understanding of the relationship between cost and quality. Insurers are feeling the pressure to provide price and quality information to providers to help them make more informed decisions about care plans. Some states have even passed legislation that requires providers to disclose their prices, which has been met with some resistance. Experts cited by Modern Healthcare say the demand for healthcare price and quality information will continue to grow in 2020.
AI will continue to offer new and innovative solutions
No list would be complete without mentioning the rise of AI in healthcare. AI startups have raised $4.3 billion across 576 deals in the last six years. This technology is already being utilized in a variety of different ways to improve patient outcomes, reduce service costs and promote the interests of investors. As data security threats increase, AI has also been employed to recognize unusual behaviors on a network, watch for threats and predict malware infections.
Currently, most healthcare organizations are only utilizing a specific algorithm that has been designed to solve a specific problem they are facing. In an interview, Dr. Felix Matthews, a managing director and physician leader at Deloitte, predicts that new algorithms that can interpret a broader span of datasets will be incorporated to expand the scope of AI from where it is today. Moving into 2020, we can expect to see an increasing number of healthcare organizations embracing AI in a variety of new and different ways.
At Ambir Technology, we take pride in keeping our finger on the pulse of healthcare trends and new emerging technologies. Having served healthcare organizations for almost 20 years, we have experienced the immense changes alongside our healthcare partners. As new technology continues to shape healthcare in 2020, we look forward to growing and adapting our own solutions. To learn more, contact an Ambir representative today.