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4 Key Predictions for Health Care in 2023 and How to Respond

4 Key Predictions for Health Care in 2023 and How to Respond. A teacup designed for reading tea leaves and fortune telling floating above a theatrical stage with the curtains open.

Health care prediction season for 2023 is upon us and thought leaders, futurists and analysts are already reading the tea leaves. Based on some of the forecasts, provider organizations can expect significant evolutionary changes in how to optimize patient engagement, the ever-expanding role that retail clinics will play in care delivery and some upheaval in venture capital funding for health care startups.

Here are four predictions that caught our attention and how health care executives can respond to some of the anticipated changes.

1 | Expect patient segmentation at scale.

The notion that all patients should receive the same clinical model increasingly is being called into question by those seeking to advance consumer engagement. Some health care companies are focused on further segmenting their services to differentiate themselves and grow within diverse populations, notes a recent Forbes health care forecast.

Some examples: Clever Care, a Southern California-based Medicare Advantage health plan, grew significantly in the Asian community by focusing on benefit offerings, a carefully designed network and a grassroots model that engaged community members. Alignment Healthcare began serving members through its “el Unico” option focused on the Hispanic population. And the SCAN Health Plan partnered with Included Health to launch its Affirm product focusing on the LGBTQ+ community.

Takeaway for 2023

Keep an eye on how programs like these develop. They may be models that provider organizations can align with their own diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives.

2 | Pharmacy roles will expand.

Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are often the most accessible health care providers in their communities. Both roles will continue to see an evolution in their scope of practice to include direct patient care that will only increase in the year ahead. Expect this shift to continue as a new pharmacy practice model emerges, a Wolters Kluwer forecast predicts.

This shift will collide with the “retailification” of health care as companies like CVS and Walgreens push further into primary care and home health spaces. The result will be the potential for greater clinical fragmentation and a need to prevent emerging silos. This decentralization will pose consistency and quality challenges for these players, says Greg Samios, president and CEO of clinical effectiveness at Wolters Kluwer.

Takeaway for 2023

In this increasingly patchworked system, Samios says, clinical decision tools capable of bridging the gaps between care settings will be needed to eliminate variability, improve care coordination and ensure that a single source of evidence-based information exists at every touch point in the patient journey.

3 | Look for a boost in remote-patient monitoring.

A quarter of the nation’s adult population with chronic conditions will use remote-patient monitoring tools next year, Forrester forecasts.

Takeaway for 2023

The expansion of remote-patient monitoring should help hospitals and health systems prevent avoidable hospitalizations and keep chronic conditions from becoming worse, says Natalie Schibell, vice president and research director at Forrester. This will be critically important with the number of patients with comorbidities on the rise.

4 | A new venture capital feeding frenzy is coming.

Soaring interest rates have brought higher capital costs for startup companies that now find themselves at an unexpected crossroads. This leaves many startups with three options: Raise another round of capital at unfavorable terms, initiate layoffs to save cash or sell the company.

Takeaway for 2023

Expect private-equity firms to begin scooping up subscale companies and consolidating them into bigger companies arranged around themes that have a better chance at survival, Forbes forecasts. The first companies that may find themselves in trouble likely will be those that target a single condition to treat poorly managed diseases.