The U.S. has the second-largest oldest population in the world. By 2050, 21.4 percent of our population will be 65 years or older. Heart disease and stroke are the leading causes of death in the U.S. population accounting for one-third of the deaths in the U.S. every year. The cost is staggering, with direct costs of 214 billion dollars and a further cost of 138 billion dollars due to lost job productivity.
As such, a new approach to care delivery is required. Today, we’re saddled with expensive, inefficient healthcare IT that has severed the personal connection between doctors and patients as well as between nurses and patients. If we don’t change how care is delivered in this country, the healthcare system will collapse into a sea of red ink.
We need to provide an organized approach to this information, with patient-approved secure access to medical records to all providers involved in the care of the patient. Utilizing Artificial Intelligence (AI) to improve patient medical literacy will be a critical piece of cost-effective management.
Better technology will also support remote patient monitoring of patients with chronic diseases. This will enable the development of Virtual Care paradigms, which will further enhance the ability of healthcare providers to extend and improve care to the at-risk population, concentrating efforts to the high-cost patient using Population Health powered by better data and analysis.
These were the key themes of a recent Medical Economics guest article by Dr. John Ciccone, Chief Medical Officer, DSS, Inc., titled, “Current Healthcare System Cannot Survive Aging Population.”
The article also discusses how it’s past time for technology to create efficiencies and boost performance as it has done in other industries. For example, technologies, such as Juno EHR, which are designed by clinicians for clinicians can restore the doctor-patient connection, empower remote care, and make population health more efficient.
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