Hospitals are expanding in non-acute care and seeking outside service providers amid shifts to population health and value-based care, according to a study from global management firm L.E.K. Consulting.
The study, conducted with the American Hospital Association, which surveyed members, consists of responses from hospital executives and economic data and other insights.
1. Hospitals are boosting spending on labor and health IT systems. Sixty-six percent of study participants expect to increase spending on physician labor, while 56 percent expect to increase spending on health IT and urgent care centers, outpatient surgery centers and physician offices. Study participants reported they are least likely to increase spending on medical technology, such as therapeutic devices.
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2. Large hospital systems that are expanding in non-acute care, labeled “progressives” by the study, are more likely to work directly with their preferred suppliers, rather than with group purchasing organizations, compared to smaller, standalone hospitals. The study states these hospital systems want “more insightful data” to inform/identify best practices for standardizing products and protocols, as well as risk-sharing agreements and lower ownership cost.
3. Hospital systems also seek third-party suppliers for patient engagement, telehealth, predictive analytics and clinical decision-support, according to the study. The study states this is so they can gain efficiency in moving patients to lower-acuity settings and/or reducing care inconsistencies.