IMO had a great week at HLTH 2022. It was an exciting meeting with a jam-packed agenda and crowds similar to pre-pandemic times.
This year’s HLTH conference also came during a time when the healthcare industry is bracing for a slowdown of investment dollars. And while talk of recession is real, it’s also true to say that many recognize economic challenges will be temporary – and that innovation and new technology solutions are essential to the future.
Speaking of the future, attendees at HLTH were younger than at past healthcare industry events. And although healthcare will remain the academic and peer-reviewed industry it has always been, it’s clear that HLTH is attracting a new generation that wants to tackle challenges differently.
Here are some other observations I had while attending HLTH:
- Clinician burnout is real and getting worse. One in five doctors want to leave the market in two years if things don’t change. Two issues contributing here are managing patients’ virtual messages and the pressure on doctors to document for reimbursement purposes during the visit. As an industry, we must work together to combat these critical issues.
- New health innovations are causing further fragmentation. Organizations are building their own electronic health records because they want to create custom models to meet the needs of a new generation that expects to have technology that works for them — just like they experience in other areas of their lives. Customers are searching for a single solution to their problems, but they often end up having to stitch together a bunch of small-point products to make progress. This causes further confusion, frustration, and a serious operational burden across the health system.
- Data, data, data. The industry’s biggest problem is that outcomes data isn’t actionable or understandable. Artificial intelligence development is still getting less traction, but many companies are working on natural language processing as an alternative. There was also much talk about making data more patient-friendly and useable in order to empower people to make informed decisions about their health. And as physical hospitals become less available, this will become an increasingly important issue in population health.
- Women’s issues are a growing market. It was great to see women’s issues at the forefront of the agenda. With discussions on topics ranging from fertility, to menopause, to what to be aware of post the overturning of Roe v. Wade, it’s clear that the industry recognizes that women’s issues drive investment, and that there’s huge market for these services.
The challenges our industry faces are real. Combatting burnout, making data actionable and usable, and empowering patients are our biggest priorities in the short term.
IMO’s team left the HLTH conference feeling energized and excited to continue making big bets in healthcare to improve on the technology that will help transform the future of the industry.
See you next year, HLTH!