Tuesday, April 14, 2009

2. The Grand Challenge

The Grand Challenge

The proposed Healthcare X PRIZE goal is to create an Optimal Health paradigm that engages and empowers individuals and communities in a way that will dramatically improve health value.

Health care is a complex system that touches each of us and consumes 17% of America’s GDP ($2.4 Trillion in 2007). In identifying the Grand Challenge, we interviewed over 50 experts in the health sector about the various challenges a prize might solve. A number of common themes emerged:
  • We have a sick care system rather than a health system
  • Financial incentives are based on volume/ procedures instead of outcomes
  • Our system is fragmented with a lack of coordination or agreement on best practices
  • The focus is on short-term disease management vs. long-term focus on improving the health of individuals and communities
  • The consumer does not have the tools to engage in health even if they have the desire.
As we explored the ways a team might address these issues in the existing system, it became clear that our health system doesn’t function like a system at all. In fact, there are no central goals that orient the different providers across the system into a cohesive unit, nor are there incentives that focus them on working together to achieve these desired outcomes. We are setting that goal. We believe the health system should help all of us attain optimal health.

As we asked our experts what an Optimal Health system should look like, we heard:
  • Eliminate acute/ rescue care through proactive approaches
  • Provide comprehensive solutions where best practices are delivered every time
  • Include clear information that highlights best performers regardless of their approach
  • Recommend effective solutions that work for consumers and drives impact
  • Include tracking systems that allow for high-quality feedback and learning
blog comments powered by Disqus