Exciting developments are emerging in the industry that will challenge the “one size fits most” standard of care we’ve become too accustomed to. Here are three trends that we think will make a significant impact:
1. Social Needs Strategies
It is estimated that non-clinical factors determine up to 80% of a patient’s health. For example, an elderly patient’s health could be impacted by extended periods of loneliness. However, treatment plans often start and end with pharmaceutical solutions, rather than lifestyle changes, which can have significant consequences on patient outcomes. Stakeholders across healthcare are beginning to consider social needs, and we see PBMs playing a substantial role in finding and facilitating the solutions.
2. Diversity and Cultural Competency
The United States is incredibly diverse, and the demographics of each community can vary drastically. And yet, the way many healthcare organizations communicate–from pamphlets and FAQs to advertising campaigns and appointment scheduling–is often standardized across all markets. As a result, some minorities may not seek, understand, or adhere to the care they need. However, cultural competency is getting stronger across the industry as plans and providers are making an increasing effort to factor cultural nuances into their patient outreach.
3. Who Provides Care
Within the next decade, there could be significant shifts in the roles that medical professionals play in patient care. Pharmacists, for example, may soon manage more than just drugs. While this may seem surprising, this shift has actually been years in the making–just look at how many people receive their flu shots and other care at their local pharmacy. The majority of patients already see their pharmacist more regularly than they see their doctor, so the foundation for more personalized attention already exists.
Abarca was founded more than a decade ago on the belief that there was a better way to provide healthcare to members—and we support these kinds of commonsense changes in healthcare.
*This blog was written by Claudia E. Soto, Director of Sales Operations and Business Development at Abarca, based on sessions she attended at the TAHP Healthcare Conference and Expo.