The Digital Health Plug-in: Analysing login tech in the NHS
The latest Digital Health Intelligence Analysis piece has been published and delves into login technology in the NHS.
The latest edition follows the money and looks beyond Matt Hancock’s January 2019 announcement of £40 million for new technology to improve login times for NHS staff.
It also looks into the major players involved in login technology and the NHS trusts which have benefited from it.
The Plug-In is a monthly insight report from Digital Health that is exclusively available to subscribers of Digital Health Intelligence, previous issues have focussed on NHSX and the GP IT Futures framework.
Digital Health Intelligence provides granular-level, census-based data about the healthcare technologies across all UK NHS trusts.
Why do digital health startups fail?
Healthcare may be the most difficult industry in which to launch an innovative new company — even for physicians and others with firsthand, frontline experience in the field — due to increased government regulation and the required scientific backing.
As two leaders of the global MedTech Innovator Accelerator program wrote in an op-ed for Stat, “In the life of any startup, there are plenty of opportunities for missteps. And pivoting isn’t as easy as it is for companies developing tech solutions, like a photo-sharing app. Mistakes in a healthcare startup can be fatal.”
In the op-ed, Paul Grand, founder and CEO of MedTech Innovator, and Kathryn Zavala, Ph.D., vice president for operations and business development, described 10 of the most common reasons they see healthcare technology startups fail:
⦁ Failure to properly articulate your value proposition
⦁ Not having an end-to-end evidence generation strategy
⦁ Choosing the wrong CEO
⦁ Staying in stealth too long
⦁ Thinking the direct-to-consumer model will make life easier
⦁ Choosing the wrong initial indication
⦁ The product doesn’t fit into existing workflows
⦁ Misunderstanding the payment and reimbursement dynamic
⦁ Putting too much money and effort into pilot programs
⦁ Staying in your echo chamber
Turning to digital technology to improve access to mental health care
Globally, one in two individuals is estimated to experience a mental health problem in their lifetime, according to the OECD, which can impact their overall health and relationships.
However, with healthcare systems around the world grappling with challenges including an increasing burden of chronic disease and aging populations, efforts to improve access to services in this area are sometimes left on the backburner.
What’s more, the latest Health at a Glance report indicates that many countries in the OECD believe that their mental health care is “inadequate”.
As the digital health industry grows, a rising number of innovators are venturing into the mental health space, vowing to offer patients more choice, greater flexibility, and, most importantly, faster access to high-quality care.
Sweden’s KRY, known as LIVI outside the Nordics, is one of the companies trying to do exactly that. It launched its digital psychology service in March 2018, a little over six months after hiring now chief psychologist Jesper Enander.
Brought in to develop the digital mental health offering, prior to KRY, Enander worked in the public healthcare system in Sweden and carried out research on the digitization of psychology at the world-renowned Karolinska Institute.
“The main reason for me joining is because there is really poor access or was poor access to health services in Sweden, and in other countries as well, for mental health.
Providence’s Aaron Martin on how a recent digital health investment is boosting patient engagement:
At the end of January, Providence announced its participation in an $18 million funding round for Twistle, a startup developing patient education and communication software for healthcare providers.
The funding, administered through the Renton, Wash.-based health system’s Providence Ventures innovation investment arm, was the latest update to a partnership that was formed between Providence and Twistle in 2017 with a goal of simplifying planning for patient encounters, and specifically surgical experiences, according to Aaron Martin, executive vice president, and chief digital and innovation officer for Providence.
“When we embarked on this work three years ago, we conducted a landscape assessment and selected Twistle out of a strong group of nearly 50 other solution companies,” Mr. Martin told Becker’s Hospital Review. Providence chose Twistle based not only on the startup’s technology expertise and open-architecture approach but also on the strength of its team and their “strong partnership orientation.”
Hancock survives latest cabinet reshuffle and remains health secretary
Matt Hancock has survived another cabinet reshuffle and will remain as Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.
Prime minister Boris Johnson carried out a reshuffle of his cabinet with casualties including Sajid Javid who resigned as Chancellor of the Exchequer. Former chief secretary to the treasury, Rishi Sunak, was later named as his successor.
Business secretary, Andrea Leadsom, housing minister, Esther McVey, and education minister, Chris Skidmore also lost their government positions.
However, Hancock, who replaced Jeremy Hunt in 2018 and survived a smaller reshuffle which took place soon after the December general election, managed to keep hold of his role.
How to balance Gen Z’s desire for digital health tools with boomers’ reluctance
While most older patients remain wary of engaging with digital health tools, younger generations are not only fully on board, but are also choosing healthcare providers based primarily on their digital offerings, according to a new NRC Health report.
This generational gap can pose major problems for providers hoping to craft a strategy that appeals to and satisfies every patient. Rather than trying to cater to each generation’s individual preferences, however, according to the 2020 Healthcare Consumer Trends report, healthcare organizations should focus instead on achieving the one thing patients of all ages can agree on convenience.
“At every point in healthcare, there’s so much friction. Customers have a terrible time navigating the system,” Brian Curtiss, marketing director at Clearwater, Fla.-based BayCare Health System, said in the report.
To do so, healthcare leaders will need to look past generational stereotypes — tech-savvy Generation Z and millennials, and old-fashioned baby boomers — and zero in on the societal and environmental issues affecting their specific patient populations.
“Gen X, boomers, millennials — we’re all stressed out. We all want things to be more convenient,” Mr. Curtiss said. “If an organization can create that feeling of frictionless ease, no matter what the demographic of the customer, it’ll make them happy.”