Four themes from Digital Healthcare World Congress

Business Development
London

While attending the Digital Healthcare World Congress in London, I was inspired to hear many healthcare thought leaders considering topics central to Smart Design’s beliefs and client collaborations. Four particular themes resonated strongly;

1. AI, data and personalization

Personalization is a topic very close to our hearts at Smart Design and it was discussed at length at the event. Use cases ranged from instigating behavior change to creating new revenue streams. However, digital service Babylon Health reminded us of all the players in the healthcare journey and raised the point that we also need to consider the clinicians perspective, not just the patients. They also concluded that the “holy grail” would be utilizing data to not just personalize treatment but to also be predictive and preventative. Orange Healthcare echoed the sentiment with their comment that “real time is too late.”

The future of healthcare is certainly exciting, but will AI kill jobs? People thought perhaps not, yet, that we’re moving into a stage of combined human and digital solutions. GE believe that “AI will add value and create different areas of work that are more patient centric” and that “AI will allow us to give better care to patients.”

Image from babylonhealth.com

2. Living with…

At Smart, we design solutions to help people live their lives and take away the burden of disease or chronic illness. This was also a big theme at the event and hugely echoed by Novo Nordisk when discussing diabetes and digital health. They stressed the importance of patient support – not helping patients engage with a disease. All across the conference however, companies showcased digital services to facilitate care pre, during and post hospital intervention. AI crept up here again as something to be assistive to chronic illness. As it’s clear that chronic illness is a problem that is going to worsen, not improve, we must work to ensure people can live normal lives and try to take some of the burden away from our health service.

3. Trust

Healthcare is hugely personal; trust must always be considered. And not just the veil of trust, real trust. Babylon Health, a trusted brand in my opinion, spoke about this topic, saying that patients, clinicians and related companies will be linked more using technology, but it has to be done in a way to build trust. More connectivity with patients will also generate direct feedback that can be used to deliver care in a more trusted and personalized way. Data transparency is, of course, a key part of this. Seimens Healthineers discussed data transparency, but not just between patient and healthcare providers, but data transparency among healthcare providers for optimization. And trust will play a massive part here.

4. Platform innovation

Pharma companies have talked for a while about moving “beyond the pill” and creating digital wraparound services. There’s now a move across the entire healthcare industry, and in fact all industries, to put people (or the customer) at the center of their organizations and set a vision that inspires. The process of innovating new products and services from this customer-centric vision, we call platform innovation. At Smart we believe that platform innovation is essential for moving from fragmented care to a connected care ecosystems,  and organizations that adopt platform innovation will thrive.

What is exciting however, is how these themes will come to life as product and service experiences across the healthcare industry. But to see so many human-centered design topics being discussed means that they will be meaningful.

If you would like to discuss any of the topics here, or Smart’s work in healthcare, please get in touch.