Hospitals at the Tech Tipping Point

October 26, 2015

Technology is fuel for the fire of the demise of hospitals as we know them.

We’re at a very interesting tipping point in respect of healthcare technology. And, it’s not tipping in the hospitals’ direction.

For decades, the cost of technology in almost every industry other than healthcare, resulted in lower costs to the consumer. But in healthcare, all it did was increase costs.

That history of technology also fed the growth of hospitals. Who, but large facilities, could afford to buy the technology? Wasn’t it cheaper and more efficient to, in essence, spread the cost of that technology by locating it in a central location, the hospital, for access by those in the community, both physicians and other providers, as well as by patients?

Thus came the centralizing of technology (read that as medical equipment) from imaging to monitoring to operating rooms themselves.

But today, the cost of technology has shifted. Instead of being more expensive, it is less. In fact, in many cases it’s become so much less that it is, or soon will be, affordable at the consumer level, bypassing completely the ASC and physician level.

And, importantly, the size (sometimes there is, effectively, no size at all) of new equipment has shrunk.

Technology is itself not a stand-alone disruptor, but it enables others to disrupt.

What are your plans to avoid disruption? What are your plans to benefit from it?

Comment or contact me if you’d like to discuss this post.

Mark F. Weiss


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