The Paradox of Patient Centricity

Patient centricity calls for “putting the patient at the center of everything we do.” Many providers within the healthcare industries (pharma, biotechnology, medical technology, etc.) are committed to patient centricity with high hopes. This means getting to know patients, understanding their unique journeys, and fostering meaningful inclusion at every step. The industry is making the effort, for example in “beyond the pill” initiatives, such as education, preventive medicine, and support programs. However, the industry is still in the “connecting” phase; reaching out to patients, trying to learn, understand and change for the better.

And yet, increasing demand for actual care is already stressing available resources. Physician/HCP shortages are everywhere. They simply can’t be trained fast enough. Meanwhile, costs continue to rise and no one would suggest everyone is getting all the care they need, let alone desire.

So, how can the industry promise patient centricity when it is already facing serious challenges just to cover the basics?

The missing puzzle piece is technology – connected devices, electronic health records, big data, machine learning, cognitive computing and artificial intelligence. As technology evolves, medical and health technology will:

  • Integrate as seamlessly as possible into consumers lives
  • Collect relevant data
  • Compare data to models of optimized outcomes
  • Provide guidance for effective self-care, and
  • Report it all (securely) to a swarm of connected HCPs and systems

Our patient-centric future will ultimately rely on machines and technology to bridge the gap between patient lifestyles and the care they receive. The industry requires deep understanding and insights from patients and caregivers, HCPs, and other stakeholders to enhance patient experiences and deliver improved outcomes.

The paradox of patient centricity is that increased empathy is needed to deliver better technology while better technology is needed to deliver increased empathy.

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