The digital future for healthcare.

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1 How digital has disrupted the healthcare sector and why the network is key to success. The digital future for healthcare. From electronic medical records in care delivery to analytics in pharmaceutical clinical trials, digital technologies are reshaping the healthcare landscape and resetting consumer expectations. At the same time, rising costs are threatening to swamp profits, and new regulations are turning stability on its head. Change and new disruptors are everywhere you look. But for those that see change as an opportunity, digital is becoming the heart of their business strategies. 25% of healthcare organizations have already fully implemented digital strategies; a further 32% are currently executing 1. Even before the ACA was enacted, healthcare had the hallmarks of an industry vulnerable to disruption 2. This is about on par with other sectors. Given regulatory and other hurdles, that s quite an achievement, and it reveals how the healthcare sector has a clearer unifying mission than most: its overriding goal is to deliver improved health outcomes. But there s plenty of work still to do. Only 10% of healthcare organizations say the maturity of their digital strategy is excellent, 49% say it s fair, poor or very poor, worse than the cross-industry average 1. And with so many different initiatives underway across the care continuum from the innovation of commercial structures to open up access, to the emergence of prevention and wellness approaches developing an orchestrated digital strategy is a tall order. 61% of healthcare leaders say that each line of business has a different definition of what digital means to them 1. This document sets out to explore how the full range of digital solutions from mobile to the internet of things (IoT), cloud to big data, video to social fit into the major strategic priorities that healthcare companies are focused on. From there we ll look at why it s critical for these initiatives to be supported by the right infrastructure, particularly networks, and what steps you can take today to get your business ready for the digital age. 1

2 Digital is vital to key initiatives across the healthcare sector. Why digital matters to your business. Deliver a superior care experience The ultimate goal of all healthcare organizations is to make people well whether that s labs processing test results, manufacturers designing prosthetics, or clinics and hospices dealing with patients. Digital technologies are enabling healthcare providers to reinvent the care paradigm in countless ways. 39% of healthcare leaders say the customer experience is a critical priority for 2015 ahead of all other goals 1. Care is getting better, and more personal. Electronic patient records now make it possible to have an accurate single view of the customer at the bedside and in the contact center, reducing errors and delays that can compromise outcomes. New clinical apps, linked to shared data stores and rich analytics tools, give doctors and other caregivers up-tothe-minute insights to make better decisions at the point of care, customized to the needs of the individual. 88% of healthcare companies say they already use, or plan to use, big data solutions to support decision-making 1. And care no longer happens just at medical facilities. Mobile and IoT technologies have ushered in new connected medical devices, which give patients the ability to manage chronic conditions from their own homes, and enable clinicians to monitor vitals and treatment compliance remotely. Self-service options and remote consultations via video and web are opening up real-time access to care at a lower cost. 2

3 How to do more with less With ageing populations, chronic conditions to support, and pressure on budgets and human resources, it s never been more important to improve operational efficiency across the board. Better efficiency comes from making better choices both in day-to-day operations and in strategic direction. A new generation of analytics tools can help managers evaluate care outcomes, to focus on what treatments work best. They can monitor macro trends, and plan staffing capacity around more accurate forecasts of care demands. To get more from limited resources, providers can use remote care technologies that ease the strain on beds and outpatient appointment slots. By equipping staff that visit people out in the community with mobile tools, they can see more patients each day. IoT asset monitoring can dramatically cut the loss, theft and waste of equipment and drugs, and enable predictive maintenance to reduce downtime of in-demand assets like fmri machines. 80% of healthcare leaders say that cost reduction is a high or critical priority for % say that increasing staff productivity is a high or critical priority 1. 68% of healthcare leaders say they have implemented or plan to implement IoT solutions, with the top objectives being to improve process effectiveness and drive revenue growth 1. Protect what s at risk Healthcare organizations are acutely aware of the need for security and reliability few things are as sensitive as electronic protected health information (ephi), and equipment or application failure can have massive consequences. In the digital age, measures such as encryption, federated identity systems, intelligent monitoring systems, high-integrity data archival and disaster recovery are important to defend against security threats and unexpected events. And with today s HIPAA-ready hosted security services and robust cloud platforms, they re easier than ever to implement. But digital technologies also let healthcare companies go on the offensive against many kinds of business risk. For instance, analytics solutions are detecting attempts at fraudulent insurance claims before they are paid. IoT trackers are helping prove the authenticity of drugs and prevent the theft of expensive equipment. Digital clinical applications can help eliminate dosing errors and flag potential risk factors to support clinical decision-making and patient safety goals at the point of care. 83% of healthcare leaders say better information security is a high or critical priority for % of healthcare leaders strongly agree that the CIO is expected to deliver an IT infrastructure that meets legal requirements compared to 29% across all industries 1. IT itself is a resource that needs optimization. Legacy applications and the systems that run them can constrain operations, and these fragile platforms can crumble just when demand is greatest, such as during a disaster. Elastic cloud platforms promise to deliver better application performance, at a lower cost. 46% of healthcare leaders plan to implement cloud 1. 3

4 A secure, reliable network is the backbone of every one of your digital initiatives. The network is the key to digital. Digital depends on the network Take all of the new digital elements of the care paradigm like telemedicine or virtual care. These only support the patient experience when there s reliable, secure and high-performance connectivity joining caregiver to patient or clinician to clinician. Similarly, access to electronic medical records on mobile devices in and around facilities is only possible because of pervasive connectivity. That access has to be reliable and resilient in times of crisis and disaster when the community needs care most. Or take the central role that hosted applications now play: analytics platforms for analyzing trial data and forecasting the spread of epidemics, collaboration solutions for exchanging specialist knowledge, clinical applications for calculating doses and accessing scans and other imagery. Reliable, fast, secure access to these applications from contact centers, clinics, offices or for those on the move depends on connectivity. Networks need to change Most healthcare organizations recognize that while networks are critical to digital, their existing infrastructure isn t up to the challenge. Already 72% say that their legacy network infrastructure is a bottleneck, and in response, 37% say they are already expanding their network capacity to support digital applications; a further 37% say they plan to soon 1. But simply adding more bandwidth isn t enough. In the digital age, networks need to be agile to support the business into the future by reconfiguring and scaling as traffic volumes shift. They need to react automatically to threats and failures to maintain service levels and prioritize quality of service for critical applications, and to operate intelligently and programmatically in ways that lift the burden of manual reconfiguration from overstretched IT teams. Sounds like a tall order? There are technologies emerging to deliver these next-generation capabilities under the banners of software-defined networks (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV), and healthcare organizations are investigating them 67% say that SDN offers significant benefits 1. 4

5 Close business and IT alignment is key. Our research shows that healthcare leaders recognize the importance of the network to support business goals. 71% say the network forms part of their competitive advantage, compared to 72% across all sectors 1. Cultural change is essential But it s just as important to achieve cultural change. When technology is so central a part of operations and care delivery, IT departments themselves must be embedded within the business. Yet only 17% of healthcare organizations say unequivocally that IT is currently well aligned to the organization s strategy 1. It s easy to see why: IT functions are being strained. 50% of leaders we spoke to say the rate of technology change is an obstacle to achieving business goals. 50% cited the complex, non-standard technology environment. 39% cited insufficient budget 1. Organizations know what they need to do: 73% say IT staff should spend time working in the business. 68% say that CIOs should chair a council on digital innovation with representatives from IT and the business. 49% say they plan to form a centralized digital center of excellence % say the network is critical to a big data strategy, compared to 75% across all sectors say that the network is integral to delivery on the promise of cloud, compared to 74% across all sectors 1. % 5

6 Start your digital journey. Digital transformation is a long-term journey, but the time to prepare your network is now. Although some of these changes will take time, there are things you can do today that will have an immediate effect. Leading organizations in the sector are already making progress with their digital transformations. For example, we ve worked with SoloHealth to innovate new customer experiences with self-service healthcare kiosks in thousands of retail sites around the US. Around 150,000 patients a day take tests, get advice and find the right help, without having to wait. Because each kiosk is connected to the network, SoloHealth can change services and information on the fly, update advertising messages, monitor consumers health, and track developing health trends across the country. We re helping a provider of nationwide home health services to make its mobile workforce more productive to support care delivery, equipping around 10,000 staff with 4G LTEconnected tablets to give them access to CRM data and electronic medical records where and when they need it. Verizon has contributed to the work of IEEE to set standards for medical-device communication. References 1 A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Verizon, February How US healthcare companies can thrive amid disruption, McKinsey&Company, June Verizon, the University of Virginia Health Systems, and the Swinfen Charitable Trust are joining forces to give healthcare professionals around the world greater access to the most current clinical knowledge. Our cloud services are supporting a telemedicine platform, while our mobile connectivity is enabling doctors to consult with specialists during diagnosis and treatment. Emergency care is one area where digital technology can make a dramatic difference. We re working with In Motion to deliver solutions that monitor the location of emergency response vehicles and dispatch the closest vehicle to the scene of an accident. These vehicles are networked, transmitting vital patient data back to the hospital ER so doctors can prepare for patients before their arrival. We help healthcare providers transform their networks and become digital businesses. Find out more Our full report explores the big picture of digital transformation and the future of the network. Find out more verizonenterprise.com 2015 Verizon. All Rights Reserved. The Verizon name and logo and all other names, logos, and slogans identifying Verizon s products and services are trademarks and service marks or registered trademarks and service marks of Verizon Trademark Services LLC or its affiliates in the United States and/or other countries. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners. WP /15

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