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M-health, Mobile Apps from the Payer Perspective

Scott Mace, for HealthLeaders Media, January 29, 2013

HLM:  Do you have an ultimate vision of where all this is going?

Tuckson: We are obviously bullish. On the other hand, we are appropriately cautious. We do not get seduced by technology for technology's sake, and we recognize that while there are lots and lots of mobile apps being rolled out every day, the number of people that are using them is still fairly small.

... I like my FitBit; it works well, and it gives me that immediate feedback that I really want, and it gives me information in an interesting way that's not intimidating. But the ultimate vision, the ultimate excitement will be when we can take that technology and move it in a more integrated way with other things so that the combination of factors gives you a much better chance to move the needle to actual change in behavior.

If things are not moving the needle to change behavior, then it's just all been fun, and it's been interesting, but it doesn't mean anything. The only thing that matters is success. Our vision is interconnected, coordinated stitching together from the individual/personal into the clinical care delivery system in a meaningful way at scale. All of that then leads to people making personally appropriate choices and changing their behavior.

Are we excited about it? Bullish? Yes. Are we also recognizing that we don't have money in our society to waste, that the consumer is paying a lot of money for healthcare, and will be paying more for healthcare?

We're going to have to obviously make sure that any of the things they're doing that are discretionary add value. If things do not add value to healthcare, then they're not going to survive. They shouldn't survive.

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1 comments on "M-health, Mobile Apps from the Payer Perspective"


Mark Ragusa (1/30/2013 at 2:24 PM)
Very good information.... some thoughts. The rapid rate of mobile health adoption reflects the convenience and utility inherent in mobile apps and devices. Health systems have an opportunity to meet patients where they are increasingly turning for health management: mobile devices. This is patient engagement at its most powerful. Engaged patients will increasingly drive a health system's success. Today that means HCAHPS and readmissions. Tomorrow that means population health and ACOs. Smart health systems understand that and are investing in mobile. For others, the window will eventually close and their patients will turn elsewhere for health management. http://axialexchange.com/blog/category/axial-mobile