The management consulting firm Oliver Wyman recently published a report on “The Patient-to-Consumer Revolution: How High Tech, Transparent Marketplaces and Consumer Power Are Transforming U.S. Healthcare.” According to the company, Health Tech ventures have received more than $2 billion in new funding from venture capitalists during the first half of 2014 alone. The analysts foresee a huge impact on the healthcare delivery systems, lowering costs by as much as 40% and providing better patient service in the bargain.
According to a company press release, three major factors will drive the improvements. Personalized applications and wearable Health Tech devices will speed the development of the “quantified self,” resulting in smarter healthcare monitoring and delivery systems. The analysts also see that social sharing of information will help reshape attitudes about health and wellness. The transparent consumer markets will cause healthcare providers to compete more on price and performance than simply reputation and referrals. And the healthcare services will be provided by integrated teams of physicians and other skilled workers in order to provide the appropriate level of care and support while spending more resources on wellness and prevention.
As a result, the analysts believe that services and outcomes that now cost a dollar to deliver will soon cost only 60 or 70 cents. They also predict an average of “10 more good years of living.” Wearable Health Tech devices will play a key role in collecting data for diagnosis, monitoring, and treatment, for both individual patients and the population as a whole.