5 Big Ideas from AHIP Conference

Christopher Cheney, June 18, 2014

In a lively series of presentations at the America's Health Insurance Plans annual conference, attendees were urged to brace for disruptive technologies, do more with data, and embrace radical change.

We have probably all been to professional conferences where glassy-eyed attendees shuffle from session to session. This year's America's Health Insurance Plans was not like that. Not at all.

There is nothing quite like an existential threat to clear the mind.

For decades, employer-sponsored insurance policies have dominated the market, prompting a wholesale approach to the business. Now, health insurance exchanges and widespread cost-sharing with health plan members is spurring a shift to retail business models.

At the America's Health Insurance Plans Institute 2014— the group's annual conference—in Seattle, there was an unquenchable thirst for big ideas to help insurers tackle the titanic challenge ahead. Here is a sample:

1. Expect disruptive technologies to spark exponential growth.
Keynote speaker Peter Diamandis MD, co-founder, CEO, and chairman of the XPRIZE Foundation, had the audience's full attention from his very first words: "We're living in the most extraordinary time ever. You're in for a wild ride ahead."

Diamandis said exponential growth of disruptive technology and new business models will be in the driver's seat during the healthcare industry's "wild ride" over the next decade.

"The rate at which disruption is occurring is accelerating," the pancreatic surgeon said, adding that faster and cheaper computing power is providing the foundation for emerging technology. "A couple of guys and gals working in a garage can impact a billion people in less than 10 years."

Christopher Cheney

Christopher Cheney is the senior finance editor at HealthLeaders Media.


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