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Virtual Health: Evolving the Experience (Beyond Virtual Visits)

Woman Having Telemedicine Session

As we gradually emerge into a brave, hopeful, post-pandemic world, it is incredible to look back at the courage, tenacity and spirit the U.S. healthcare system has demonstrated in combatting the virus. The journey we have shared presented many points of frustration and despair, which makes it even more important to recognize the successes and the wins.

One of the most visible, tangible wins has been in the domain of virtual health. Over the past year, providers and payors have quickly enabled virtual visits’ astounding growth as a mission critical tool, connecting patients and members to caregivers during multiple lockdowns.

Impressive Growth in Virtual Visits

We have seen tenfold and greater growth of in total visits (depending on the provider), and Forrester estimates that as many as 41% of U.S. adults have had a remote primary care visit as of Q4 2020. This has been a huge boon for the virtual health industry’s growth. Forrester notes no less than 13 significant virtual care platform providers in its Wave report. And they run the gamut from monoliths like Microsoft, new cross-industry communications giants like Zoom, telehealth staples like Teladoc, and a host of smaller innovators.

All of this is reason to celebrate the long-anticipated era of innovation and growth happening now in virtual health.

A New Era in Virtual Health

Coming right behind virtual visits, we believe, will be an avalanche in the adoption of all things virtual – monitoring, digital therapeutics, personal connected health, etc. These are all industry areas that have had success in the past ten years and are well positioned to more fully mainstream than would have been possible pre-Covid.

So, what’s the problem?

The central issue we have seen emerge is one of orchestration. Many pieces of the ecosystem are already in place. Many experiences for patients and members encountering new options in their journeys are already effective, even compelling. Organizations’ ability to gather important insights has made great strides.

However, there are very few, if any, healthcare organizations that have come out of this hectic year with a shiny, fully-thought-through virtual health strategy that encompasses the full continuum of:

  • infrastructure,
  • experiences, and
  • insights.

The sheer pace of change is exposing complex challenges for our clients, exposing three areas where, we believe, digital transformation can truly drive positive change in healthcare.

Innovating Hybrid Ecosystems

Virtual health’s growth creates enormous tension in organizations trying to manage the age-old ‘‘buy vs. build’’ question, with expectations shifting daily.

Our expertise in deploying industry-leading platforms and complex custom application development helps clients:

  • Identify opportunities to develop key in-house capabilities with custom tools and applications
  • Leverage major platforms in innovative ways to orchestrate your ecosystem
  • Ultimately increase (and prove) ROI from a better orchestrated ecosystem of custom and third-party virtual health offerings

Curating Consistent Experiences

Virtual health’s proliferation is crowding an already-busy healthcare journey with new options, which makes curated journeys critical for customer stickiness.

Leverage our expertise in healthcare patient experience strategy, design, and implementation to:

  • Guide patients through compelling journeys in an increasingly complex, yet rewarding, virtual health environment
  • Enhance care professionals’ interactions and experiences and minimize impacts
  • Ensure the experience catalyzes, rather than hinders, desired virtual health programmatic outcomes

Integrating Performance Analytics

Virtual health adoption poses many new performance and value questions, which many organizations are unequipped to answer.

We see yet more emphasis on integration strategies for analytics, aimed at unlocking cross-platform intelligence and insight. Healthcare companies need to be able to:

  • Identify and prioritize virtual health programs based on patient needs and organizational priorities, using cross-platform analytics and BI
  • Ensure compliant integrations allow data assets to complement one another effectively across analytics solutions
  • Ultimately drive incremental valuethrough novel insights that have the potential to further enhance clinical and business outcomes

Grow Your Capabilities and Optimize Virtual Health Experiences

Ready to advance your virtual health maturity? Our healthcare experts can help. Contact us today to get started.

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