Thanks to our friends at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center, we were able to join other local innovators as part of the Friends of Project Healthcare Pavilion at ViVE 2023, held the last week of March. It was a beautiful time for everyone from colder climes to visit our fair city, and the event did not disappoint.
More transparency: It’s easy to discard this as a decades-old buzzword, but transparency came up in discussions ranging from interoperability to drug pricing and network design—a clear indicator not only of its importance in establishing trusted solutions but also that healthcare still has a long way to go. (Note that transparency is a fundamental tenet of Ursa Health, and we built our analytics platform with “no black boxes” to facilitate interaction and collaboration between analytics and clinical teams. Read more about this here.)
More standardization: Standardization occupies this same territory: lots of discussion about standardizing and normalizing industry concepts, vendor RFPs, data feeds, and more, as is typical of most healthcare conferences. Whether alternative approaches can meet the same ends, recognizing how little is "standard" about healthcare, is an exciting area of exploration.
FFS masquerading as VBC. Interest in figuring out how to make VBC work remains high, but as a whole we are further away than we all hoped we’d be five years ago. Health systems found out during the pandemic that it is very difficult to make money just practicing medicine and continue to be focused on the unit economics of the FFS world. Unfortunately, the pandemic may have provoked some health systems to lean in harder on FFS while the industry figures out which VBC models actually work.
Changing care models as a complement to, not a replacement for, standard healthcare delivery mechanisms: When the pandemic hit, there was a huge push into telehealth and virtual care, for obvious reasons. However, the narrative that virtual care is going to save everything and allow better access to high-quality care for more people was probably pushed too hard. At the end of the day, virtual care isn’t always the best fit. In fact, virtual care shouldn't really be called out so much as its own type or style of care, but rather recognized as part of the overall healthcare toolkit. Sometimes it’s the right tool to use in a given situation, but it needs to sync with and work alongside in-person care, which is still very important. Virtual care can help with co-management between PCPs and specialists and serve as a bridge between in-person visits when patients require a higher level of touch to ensure positive outcomes—a more cost-effective approach than in-person visits.
And, of course AI, AI, and more AI: How can we make it work for healthcare and make it more accessible? There’s a lot of promise and even more uncertainty about how to get real value out of the ChatGPTs of the world, and we expect this to be a topic for years to come.
We’re looking forward to continuing conversations with friends new and old, as well as to ViVE 2024 (even though it will be in Los Angeles instead of our hometown).
We also wanted to recognize CHIME and HLTH for acknowledging the recent mass shooting at Nashville’s The Covenant School. On behalf of ViVE, CHIME and HLTH have pledged to make a combined $50,000 donation for the victims and their families. In addition, ViVE has launched a GoFundMe page to make it easy for conference attendees and the entire healthcare community contribute. ViVE will ensure that all contributed funds will be donated to the designated relief funds associated with this tragedy.