Hospitals and doctors have seen significant portions of their revenue dry up as non-essential, elective procedures are appropriately halted amid the coronavirus pandemic. However, oftentimes elective procedures are sources of profit that help a hospital cover fixed costs, subsidize other unprofitable service lines and otherwise stay out of the red.
Fear not, demand for elective procedures is unlikely to disappear over the longer term. When the coronavirus pandemic is contained, plenty of patients will be looking to re-book or schedule their elective procedures.
However, in the near term, the disruption will be substantial. The longer hospitals have to defer revenue generating procedures, the more red ink they will face. These next few months are critical for a hospital or health system. A facility’s ability to manage through the pandemic will inform whether they are around to eventually deliver those non-essential services in the future and how quickly they can ramp back up and return to normal.
A look back at MedTech innovations underscores the integral role that technology has played in healthcare and better patient outcomes. But what comes next? Technological advancements and MedTech innovation at the end of the last decade have set the stage for a new level of care in the 2020s. Here are just a few examples of how technology is making treatment and healthcare delivery more effective:
Historically, when hospitals needed information or data points for analysis, practitioners or researchers pored through books or searched through logs or documentation in file rooms. Hospital databases make it much easier for healthcare professionals to find the information they’re looking for and to use that data in beneficial ways.
Here is a sampling of some of hospital databases your MedTech customers and prospects are using for research, education, benchmarking, and inspiring innovative ways to provide care.
Advances in technology provide businesses and organizations with new functionality, the ability to streamline processes, and greater efficiency. Tech solutions also generate massive amounts of data. This big data holds the key to intelligent decision-making, more accurate forecasting, and even smart systems that can learn and take action on their own. To unlock those benefits, however, businesses first need to overcome the challenges associated with establishing a big data analysis process.
Biomaterials science can provide many components for medical devices that can save lives or improve the quality of life for patients. Some of these devices include heart valves, orthopedic prostheses, and intraocular lenses. These devices all interact with biological systems within the body. There has been substantial investment in this area to develop the next generation of medical devices to help with injuries and chronic diseases.
Media headlines about vaping lung injuries are dominating the news, with all 50 states currently reporting cases. While there have always been warnings about the dangers of vaping, new instances of injury have now prompted the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to issue new advisories during what some would call a public health crisis.
As of December 3, 2019, 2,291 cases of vaping related lung injury have been reported, including 48 deaths. Additional deaths that could be linked to vaping are under investigation.
One question that MedTech sales and marketing teams definitely need to be prepared to answer is, “If our hospital uses your system, how will it impact our costs and reimbursement?” Understanding how Medicare and other insurers make decisions about how much to pay a hospital for procedures and patient care will help you accurately answer that question. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), under the Social Security Act, bases reimbursements on the Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS), which categorizes cases according to diagnostic-related group (DRG).
MedTech companies may have some questions of their own about hospital DRGs and how CMS uses them to determine reimbursement. Here are five answers you need:
Healthcare organizations continually collect massive volumes of data. These stores of information can help physicians and patients understand risks, focus on prevention rather than reacting to acute conditions, and avoiding undesirable outcomes. Predictive analytics in healthcare applications can turn data into valuable insights.
The concept of using data to determine probable outcomes is not new to healthcare — big data has been a buzzword in the field for years, and physicians have always studied the progression of diseases, patients’ responses to medication and treatments, and warning signs of impending critical conditions. Predictive analytics augments physicians’ knowledge built over lifetimes of practice with instant access to data insights and alerts of potential crises so healthcare practitioners can intervene.
As of 2017, about 59 percent of all hospitals registered in the U.S. were nonprofit, and 21.3 percent were for-profit hospitals, with the remainder state-owned. With nonprofit hospitals outnumbering for-profit hospitals by nearly three to one, it may appear that organizing as a nonprofit clearly has more benefits than choosing a for-profit model. However, there are pros and cons of each type of hospital organization.
Here’s a breakdown of some of the pros and cons for hospital administrators as well as how MedTech sales and marketing professionals can use that information to their advantage.
Since Elon Musk’s tweet characterizing nanotech as “BS,” there’s been a continuing debate about the practical applications of nanotechnology — and where the dividing line between innovation and hype lies. Medical nanotechnology, where there is a great deal of promise, is no exception.
The idea of nanotechnology, technology at nanoscale — about 1 to 100 nanometers, about 0.000001 of the thickness of a sheet of paper — is decades old. Nano.gov points out that physicist Richard Feynman included the concepts behind nanotechnology in a presentation at the American Physical Society meeting at CalTech in 1959. In his talk, he described a process that would enable manipulating and controlling individual atoms and molecules.
Since the integration of technology and medicine, MedTech has had no shortage of interested investors. Medtech is a broad industry comprised of many different types of solutions, including medical device startups, biopharma, and healthcare IT. Medtech investors come from a variety of sources. What they have in common is a vision that medicine and technology can do great things together.
These MedTech venture partners have been able to raise substantial amounts of money. Medical device companies alone raised $2.9 billion in 2018, besting the previous year’s $2.8 billion. The U.S. medical device market, the largest in the world, is anticipated to reach $173 billion in 2019. This hunger for opportunity means there will be more investments to those with innovative ideas. But where does MedTech investment money come from? Typically, from MedTech venture partners, which may dabble in several industries or focus solely on healthcare.
Here are the top MedTech investors that you should have your eye on.
The healthcare industry is making a fundamental shift in how physicians and hospitals provide care and receive payment for it. The fee-for-service or volume-based care model will give way to the value-based care model.
Before the Affordable Care Act (ACA), physicians and healthcare facilities almost exclusively billed Medicare or insurers for the individual services they provided — each appointment, each test, each procedure. With that fee-for-service model, however, there is more potential reward for physicians who provide the greatest number of services, not necessarily for those that provide care that results in the best patient outcomes. Stakeholders in organizations paying for healthcare realized that they were spending more, but patient outcomes weren’t necessarily better.
The value-based care model, however, bases payment to physicians and healthcare facilities based on performance. Healthcare providers are rewarded with incentives for better patient outcomes, fewer readmissions or complications, and providing care in the most cost-effective way.
As a MedTech marketer or sales professional, you know that selling to a hospital can often mean dealing with a larger organization. Between 72 percent and 80 percent of hospitals and nursing homes’ non-labor expenditures are through group purchasing organizations (GPOs) and integrated delivery networks (IDNs).
Ground-breaking advances in prosthetics and orthotics are giving patients capabilities that few people imagined a decade ago. The goal is no longer to simply replace a limb or correct biomechanical issues. Research in prosthetics and orthotics advancements is aiming for people to use artificial limbs just as anyone uses their arms or legs.
These seven advances in prosthetics and orthotics are promising greater functionality and improved quality of life:
Concerns over medical device shortages are again at the forefront for providers and for health professionals. Though there are always worries over the availability of certain types of medical technology, the current, looming crisis began with state environmental protection agencies issuing orders for sterilization facilities to stop using ethylene oxide (EtO) in their processes.
November is National Diabetes Month. Diabetes is a chronic disease that continues to be an epidemic in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), approximately 9.4% of the country’s population (equivalent to around 30.3 million people) have diabetes. Those afflicted with the disease suffer complications, and it is currently the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S. As with any disease, technology has the potential to make an impact in diabetes treatment. Diabetes technology could provide significant advantages to those afflicted with it and the clinicians who treat them.
Integrated delivery networks (IDNs) offer both health care services and health insurance plans. That simple definition, however, doesn’t do justice to the impact IDN healthcare has had on the industry. When the Affordable Care Act (ACA) put more emphasis on accountable and integrated healthcare, IDNs emerged as a model to meet the challenge of providing quality care at a reasonable price.
Although IDNs’ organizations can vary, they typically provide comprehensive healthcare services and leverage EHRs to share information about the patient with facilities and physicians and other practitioners in the network.
IDN patients usually have access to the full spectrum of services — preventive, acute, rehabilitation, and specialized care — all from one healthcare brand. Furthermore, patients who subscribe to the IDN’s healthcare plan understand that services within the network are covered according to the terms of their plans, and there’ll be no surprises when it comes to billing. The model can also be successful at minimizing patient leakage. By providing a one-stop shop, as it were, for healthcare, satisfied patient-consumers never have to look outside the network.
Integrated delivery networks typically operate in specific U.S. regions. This strategy allows them to build healthcare systems that offer most services that patients need and can take advantage of close to home.
The IDN model also creates a powerful negotiating position with Medtech companies and other suppliers. Marketing to providers who are part of an IDN typically means dealing in volume and scale.
The story of the Theranos fraud allegations and fallout is likely to color decisions around healthcare diagnostics companies’ R&D, operations, marketing, and funding for years to come. Although Theranos shuttered in 2018, the rise and fall of this company, which claimed to have technology capable of performing hundreds of tests on only a few drops of blood, continues to capture attention, make headlines, and cause founders and investors to think twice about their decisions.
The cautionary tale continues as Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes and president Ramesh Balwani prepare to stand trial in Aug 2020 on 11 counts, including wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud. If they’re found guilty, they could be fined millions of dollars and face up to 20 years in prison.
Surgical robots are in high demand, which will only grow in the future. According to Markets and Markets, the surgical robotics market will grow from $3.9 billion in 2018 to $6.5 billion by 2023. These are not new machines, entirely, but their sophistication and precision has been advancing steadily for years, and the market is starting to react. So, what’s driving this growth, and what does it mean for healthcare?
Almost every patient will, at some point, require a physician referral, typically from a primary care doctor. Much of the time, patients aren’t provided options. Referrals are made based on a number of factors, the most significant one being who is in their healthcare system. That’s not true all the time, especially in rural areas where specialists are hard to find. But how do doctor referrals work? And why does it matter to you, a supplier or provider to the healthcare industry? Let’s explore these questions.
As the world’s population continues to age, the demand for acute care hospitals will only increase. According to the latest Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Hospital Compare List, there are approximately 4,749 acute care hospitals in the U.S. The majority of those hospitals, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)—almost 70%--are part of a healthcare system. This trend may make these facilities an even more significant factor in how populations are treated. Their critical role isn’t expected to diminish and is part of the broader ecosystem of primary care and public health measures.
Welcome back to Conversations With Carevoyance, a series dedicated to highlighting healthcare and MedTech vendors, thought leaders, and innovators across the healthcare industry. Today, we’re chatting with Dr. Dan Ladizinsky of Suturegard.
Founded in 2017, Suturegard is a medical technology solutions company with a primary product that allows surgeons to close wounds more quickly and easily with fewer sutures and in such a way that reduces or removes the need for skin grafts and reduces damage to skin.
When your Medtech company is marketing or making a sales pitch to a hospital, should you be talking to the chief administrative officer (CAO), the chief clinical officer (CCO), the chief information officer (CIO) — or all three?
This list of hospital executive positions and a brief explanation of the roles and responsibilities of hospital leadership can give you a better idea of who needs to know about your Medtech system or products, which relationships are worth the investment of time to build, and who needs to be at the table when it’s time for a decision.
As a MedTech marketing or sales professional, you probably devote a great deal of your time qualifying prospects. Undoubtedly, some of the criteria you use are the size of the medical provider and adequate budget to afford your MedTech system. So, when you build your list, why not start at the top?
Here is a list of some of the largest medical providers by region in the U.S. These health systems and organizations span a broad “medical providers” definition that includes both for-profit and non-profit offering hospital, primary, and specialty care.
As a marketing professional, you can manage the basics, probably in your sleep. You develop ideal buyer personas, identify your target market, segment your list, and run efficiently executed campaigns. When you strategize on how to market to medical professionals, however, you need to keep additional things in mind to do your job effectively.
Physicians and medical professionals, more than most prospects in other vertical markets, have extremely demanding schedules, are ultra-focused on their work, and operate as part of complex organizations. They’re also inundated daily with messages, email, reports — and marketing material. Successfully learning how to market to medical professionals takes building marketing strategies that include these seven characteristics to help your campaigns rise above the noise.