For the last couple decades, there has been a trend towards greater and greater healthcare spending, even as a percent of GDP. This has helped bring about the Affordable Care Act (ACA, i.e., Obamacare), as well as other national and local efforts. The belief is that provisions of ACA will address the trend in cost increases, as well as lead to better care. Historically, efforts like these have not made a sufficient impact.
Out of this backdrop arose the concept of disease management some 20 years ago. The rubric is still going strong, but with only occasional, modest successes. Prevention, and the current approach to clinical guidelines, aren’t enough. Nor is the hope in lower cost technology, which requires a willingness on the part of some commercial entity to take on that strategy, as well as the low probabilities in R&D.
Below is a document that lays out a way of thinking for medical products regarding disease management. Some of the underlying drivers for the approach’s success are moving into place, such as the necessary healthcare IT to capture sufficient data. The changes engendered by the ACA will put on even more pressure to change. Moreover, the cost crisis is being felt as never before.
© 2013 Winton Gibbons