AI, User Experience Predicted as Top Health Care Priorities in 2019

According to a report recently issued by market research firm Forrester, the effective use of virtual care, artificial intelligence and other technologies that allow for intuitive user experiences will be the top priorities of health care organizations looking to thrive in 2019. Forrester notes that whether or not traditional health care organizations can successfully analyze and utilize big data in order to zero in on business opportunities and boost user engagement will be key in winning the emerging battle with a growing wave of outside influences.

The market research firm notes that the inroads being made by major players outside of the health care industry represent one of the greatest threats to patient loyalty and revenues for health care organization: “Major disruptors, like Amazon and Walmart, will make good on their promises, delivering the personalized experiences that customers have been yearning for from health care organizations.” These disruptors have the experience and reach necessary to take over “more of the customer journey,” states Forrester. Traditional health care organizations have one clear path to success: cultivate “raging fans” by creating positive customers experiences utilizing technology such as virtual care that addresses patients’ changing needs.

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Forrester reports that 74 percent of American adults who go online have either used or would like to try a remote health care support service, with this number expected to grow even more in the coming year. The report asserts that “it’s the beginning of the end for traditional health care delivery,” as virtual care has started to outpace traditional outpatient care.

It’s not just that the experience that health care organizations offer to their customers’ needs to evolve, notes Forrester; the way that these organizations measure satisfaction and engagement also needs to change. The delayed feedback offered by CAHPS scores and star ratings will need to give way to real-time customer and employee feedback processing.

As companies like Walgreens, CVS-Aetna and Walmart have effectively made access and convenience a priority, health care organizations that don’t take advantage of artificial intelligence, data analytics and related technologies could be left behind in 2019 with little chance to catch up. As Forrester concludes, health care organizations “must understand what actions truly drive improved outcomes for their customers in order to achieve future financial success and optimize workflow.”