Monday, May 03, 2010

#whccic Panel: overcoming obstacles to innovation

More real time notes from the WHCC Innovation Congress.

Martin Graf of L.E.K. Group chaired the panel. Other members of the panel:

MaryAnn Stump, SVP, Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer, BCBSMN
Mohan Nair, EVP and Cheif Marketing Executive, Regence Group
Lindsay Resnick, Chief Marketing Officer, Gorman Health Group
Lois Gargotto, VP, Market and Business Segment Operatins, Humana

Macro trends:
- Health Care Reform
- Medicare, Medicare, Tricare and VA increasing spending
- Reduction in employer-based coverage
- Increase in uninsured population
- Increased Employee cost share
- Aging population
- Reduced benefits to retirees
- Consumer engagement increasing
- Cost impact of new technologies and therapies

The Health Care System thrives on innovation - Then why does it seem that major sections of the industry seem to thrive on the Status Quo.

It takes a lot to innovate but not a lot to disrupt it.

What is the biggest obstacle to innovation in your organization?

MaryAnn - We believe we need to be knowers. We need to be learners.  Thought innovation precedes Approach innovation and then product innovation.

What are the game changers - what are the disruptive solutions. How do we embrace game changers:

Lois Gargotto - Understanding who the consumer is. moving from a traditional employer-oriented strategy.

Humana has recruited a new Consumer Research Czar.

We have to recognize the different consumer personas. 

The Consumer-Payer-Provider triangle  There is conflict in the industry.  Providers under pressure, Payers under pressure and the Consumer has seen a rising cost share and are feeling disenfranchised.

Mohan Nair - You have to have the courage to challenge the status quo. Learn to forget.

Lindsay Resnick - Resistance to change is an internal issue. That's how we have always done it. Decision paralysis. eg. with health reform - wait to see what happens with health reform. Need to work through alternative scenarios.

Externally, there is a need for consumer behavior change. We haven't balanced education and messaging and tools to encourage change. We communicate rules and boxes and not answering the "What's In It For Me" consumer question.

MaryAnn - Minute Clinics are a game changer. They meet a consumer need. We haven't done enough to encourage consumer engagement.
The linkage to consumer engagement is the number one issue.

Lois -  Health Insurance will become highly regulated. Therefore the opportunity is to transition to a focus on wellbeing. There will be a convergence of health and wealth management. We are already seeing this in the senior population. Health, Wealth, Life and Happiness. Exercise, diet, groceries all play in to the solution.

Mohan - How do we make change happen - Innovation comes from the opposite of reform - ie. control. How do we manage the environment of health. Innovation comes at home based around Social Media and other tools. Look to engage consumers BEFORE they enter the illness cycle. 5,000 consumers engage on the web while they are healthy. Come to the site 5 times a year.  People are engaging with each other. 

Lindsay - In a reformed environment  Medical Management is the game changer. From a practical standpoint we will have to manage medical loss ratios. New entrants from the uninsured population will require Health Care. This will be the area of immediate payoff.

Who will be the innovators?

Lindsay - The consumers

MaryAnn: Keep your eyes open - innovation can come from anywhere.

Lois - Technology and devices eg. the iPhone. PCP's are a dying breed. Nurse-Managed Medical Homes are appearing.

Mohan - There are more unknowns than ever. You have to build a platform. You have to make choices and commit. The world is moving from Market Following to Market Making.

Social Media must be integrated because the community is becoming a co-creator and Social Media is the transport for innovation.

Final thoughts

MaryAnn - embrace the crazies and it won't be all neat and tidy.

Mohan - The Wellness Hub is in the family Household. Embrace it.

MaryAnn - doing interesting things with American Well. It required extensive collaboration and re-thinking in many areas.

Lois - Many people go to YouTube to gather information / facts

PS. CMS has put out guidelines on the use of Social Media. their recommendations are so restrictive they largely prevent use. It will be interesting to see the industry response.

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