As New Zealanders, we all want an integrated health system that can support its communities to “Live Well and Stay Well”. As a sector, we have talked about this for a long time, in many forums and platforms from health strategies, sector reviews, conferences, and just in our own board meetings. Across all of these we wholeheartedly agree; that the health system of the future should be one where all health care providers work together to create a seamless service, designed around its communities. This is in contrast to the traditional model where responsibility for care is handed from one organisation to another, often in a disjointed way that mirrors a game of Chinese whispers where the patient at the end doesn’t quite get the whole message.
The pressure is mounting on health organisations; large, medium and small, public and private to deliver on the promises of this future health system. A system that is no longer on the horizon, but right in front of us, brought on even more quickly due to the changes to our operations inflicted by COVID-19.
While Doc Emmet from Back to the Future famously said “where we are going we don’t need roads”, this may be the case for the future of the health sector as moving to a cloud-based technology can enable your people to come up with ideas that we haven’t even considered yet. However, as we are starting out, a roadmap outlining some of the challenges and difficulties and how to plan for or avoid them is something that is needed and appreciated by our customers and partners in order to be able to reach those futuristic visions.
On paper, digital health business and technology transformation sounds like an easy enough concept – harness existing technological innovations to enhance the health and well-being of individuals. The reality, however, is something more complex and extensive. With a vast scope of services, the term ‘digital health’ encompasses everything from interconnected patient data systems, digital health records, ingestible sensors, online testing, telehealth services, healthcare apps, IoT wearable gadgets and from electronic records to robotic caregivers.
Some of the common goals and objectives of the healthcare sector digitization may include better patient record-keeping, speed to diagnosis, utilisation of machine learning and AI capabilities, prevention of disease, personalised medicine, and at a palatable cost that meets budget limitations. Overall, these initiatives benefit both the health organisation and their patients – patients feel in control of their health, technology reduces costs of operation and broadens accessibility; overall the healthcare system runs in a smooth low-friction way.
Specifically, cloud transformation can meet the goals of delivering health services at a lower cost. As a sector, New Zealand’s total health and disability spending is around $18 billion, or about 9.5% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). This spending covers public, private and non-profit sectors and also includes ACC expenditure. In the public sector, healthcare makes up about 22% of government spending, according to the Ministry of Health. The Treasury estimates that if nothing were to change about healthcare services and delivery, government health spending will rise to around 11% of GDP by 2060 which will be larger than any country within the OECD.
Fast Track Your Future Business Transformation with the Cloud
The Spark Health Fast Track Your Future Business Transformation with the Cloud: A Guide for Health Leaders e-book is designed for executive leaders and IT decision-makers to better understand the business transformation benefits and challenges of implementing a public cloud platform for the New Zealand healthcare sector, referencing the Health Cloud Reference Architecture. It also includes a Cloud Readiness checklist to ascertain how ready your organisation is ready for business transformation enabled by public cloud.
Once you have read this guide, contact us to talk about scheduling an initial discussion or a deep-dive business transformation strategy, enabled by the cloud. As part of an engagement, we provide you with the full Spark Health Cloud Reference Architecture to accelerate your transformation journey.