Believe it or not but the healthcare industry is ailing and in need of help. Yes, there have been great advances in medical treatment over the years. However, the delivery and packaging of those treatments are mostly ineffective and inefficient. Plus, they are not customer friendly. There are different problems that are causing health care to fail. One is medical errors, which are one of the biggest causes of death in the United States. Then, there is the increasing cost of healthcare services. Problems like these need innovative solutions. For instance, getting the services of doctor at home should become more common. This will help the patients avoid the expensive hospital fees and they can get the treatment from the comfort of their homes.
5 Factors That Make It Hard to Introduce Innovation in Health Care
Although health care needs innovation, it is not easy to introduce it. And there are different factors responsible for it. Let’s have a look at some of them:
Government regulations of health care can both aid and hinder innovation. Therefore, it is crucial for the innovators to understand the regulations fully and how they will affect the innovation. Also, they should know-how and by whom those regulations are modified, enacted, and applied. For instance, officials are well aware that they will be punished by both politicians and the public if they don’t respect a regulation, like approving a harmful drug. They should focus on tightening the approval process even if it means delaying an innovation.
A new health care company should keep in mind that the regulators may try to interpret ambiguous rules to show their value to the public. They can also punish a hapless innovator. This makes it difficult to introduce innovation in health care.
Medical technology is becoming more advanced. Therefore, it is important to know when and how to invest or adopt it. If you start to use the technology too early, you may notice that the infrastructure required to support the innovation is not in place. If you wait, you may miss the chance of gaining a competitive advantage. You should know that the competition doesn’t only exist within drugs aimed to treat a similar disease category but also across the various technologies used.
Another major hurdle to introducing innovation in health care is customers. Sick people and their families tend to become members of different disease associations like the American Cancer Society which usually asks for research funds. Also, various interest groups like the elderly advocate the funding for their health care needs via reputable organizations such as AARP. Also, those who are suffering from an ailment pressurize health care providers to give them diagnostic services and drugs which they think are effective. This happens because people arm themselves with the knowledge they find on the internet. And so, they don’t take any advice from the doctors. In fact, they shun the drugs prescribed by medical professionals. All this creates a problem when bringing innovation to health care.
Cost-pressured payers and empowered consumers demand accountability from health care innovators. They want technology innovators to show long-term safety and cost-effectiveness. In addition, they want them to meet the safety requirements of regulatory agencies. Many industry organizations in the United States haven’t been successful in doing just. One reason for this is that agencies usually focus on the process rather than the output. This means that they consider if a treatment process had been properly followed instead of checking if there has been any improvement in a patient’s health.
It is important for health care innovators to address their demands. They should tell the health care sectors what changes they want to bring to the industry. If not, the innovating companies will face backlash from the agents of accountability or the public.
Another factor that stops innovation from entering health care is the funds. There are two types of financial challenges that appear when it comes to introducing innovation. The first is funding the development of the innovation. And the second is determining who will pay how much for the service or product that it produces. There’s also the long investment time that is required for new drugs or therapies that need the approval of the FDA. Investors who invest in health care usually have to wait for years to find out if the product is going to be approved for use.
Introducing innovation in health care is important. After all, it will help the industry to become much more advanced. However, it’s not easy to bring innovation into the space. And all of the aforementioned factors are responsible for stopping innovation from entering the health care industry.