Health 2.0 sees the future of healthcare innovation in collaboration

By Laura Lovett

Health 2.0 co-founder Indu Subaiya said she sees healthcare as a living, learning, interconnected system, and the future of healthcare innovation will come from collaboration. 

“In this world where health happens everywhere, we are thinking a lot of this metaphor of a cell and the fact that a cell membrane in permeable,” Subaiya said during her keynote address at the Innovation Symposium at HIMSS18. “It exists within a living system and ideally it responds in real time to our actions and represents an interconnected and continuously learning and living system.”

But right now healthcare is seeing several different trends, particularly supply and demand. While the system is seeing an increase in the need for care, doctor burnout is on the rise -- increasing from 40 percent in 2013 to 51 percent in 2017, according to Subaiya. At the same time, the healthcare system is also seeing an increasing amount of consolidations. 


“So now instead of the cell membranes we have systems that are building more walls around each other may have data flow within them but it is still creating a tension between the world where information flows very freely,” Subaiya said. “That is a question we are asking ourselves now, do we have a fundamental tension in responding to supply and demand from a…  decentralized role where data moves freely to a more consolidated world. There are two different ways of addressing the supply and demand. The other thing that is going on contextually is we have a race of who is going to manage risk in this world. Is it going to be government, technology ecosystems, hospitals or is it going to be Pharma? It is not just about who is going to own risk but who has the expertise to do so.”

Health 2.0 looked at five drivers that could advance healthcare; the new interoperability and the increased use in FHIR and SMART system; novel modalities, such as voice assistants and virtual reality; new market entrances like Amazon and JP Morgan; business model disruptions, and new environments for health systems like schools. 

But Subaiya said that no one system can solve healthcare a crisis alone. Partnering is key to solving some of the most pressing issues in healthcare, Subaiya said. However, some healthcare providers are still reluctant to embrace the change, citing little resources, difficulty in integration and a lack of domain experience. 

Subaiya urged providers to go beyond their walls. She gave the example of the opioid epidemic. The condition isn’t limited to one type of doctor or care. Treating addiction includes mental health services, physician referrals, Pharma regulations, and emergency care. 

“These problems are complex, the solution sets are starting to aggregate into small clusters that make sense for a large problem. Now they need the mechanism and the infrastructure with the care delivery system to have true impact,” she said.
For example, in solving the opioid epidemic innovation around the opioid epidemic is clustering into care coordination, digital therapeutics, identifying and monitoring, social determinant side. 

“I think you’ll see incredibly powerful platforms that are consolidating units of innovations. We are going to be seeing people putting pieces of innovation together,” said Subaiya.