Forces of change


Forces of change

The future of health

The future of health will likely be driven by digital transformation enabled by radically interoperable data and open, secure platforms. Health is likely to revolve around sustaining well-being rather than responding to illness.

TWENTY years from now, cancer and diabetes could join polio as defeated diseases. We expect prevention and early diagnoses will be central to the future of health. The onset of disease, in some cases, could be delayed or eliminated altogether. Sophisticated tests and tools could mean most diagnoses (and care) take place at home.

What should you do next?

The health industry is on the cusp of a transformation that will affect all stakeholders. Incumbent players can either lead this transformation as innovative and well-connected market leaders or they can try to resist this inevitable change.

A wide range of companies-from inside and outside of the health care sector—are already making strategic investments that could form the foundation for a future of health that is defined by radically interoperable data, open and secure platforms, and consumer-driven care.

As stakeholders prepare for the future of health, they should consider the following actions:

  • Build new businesses. The incidence and prevalence of major chronic diseases (for example, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, COPD) will likely decline dramatically. In response, health organizations should adjust their business models to stay competitive.
  • Forge partnerships. Technology giants, start-ups, and other disruptors are new to the health care landscape but are incentivized to drive change. What they lack is health care expertise, regulatory expertise, a targeted consumer base, and existing partnerships with other incumbents. Disruptors will likely be more willing to partner with incumbents that are seen as driving innovation.
  • Appeal to the newly empowered health consumer. Stakeholders should develop tactics to engage effectively with consumers. They should also work to earn their trust and demonstrate value. Consumer attitudes and behaviors are malleable in the future of health. Interoperable data, machine and deep learning capabilities, always-on biosensors, and behavioral research can enable personalized and real-time AI-driven behavioral interventions that shape consumer beliefs and actions.
The future of health
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