On the eve of the Medtech Europe Forum (30 November to 2 December) in Brussels, Rob ten Hoedt, Chairman of MedTech Europe believes we have no time to lose in changing our thinking and ways of doing business
RtH: This industrial revolution is driven by all the new technologies that have been and will be developed in the next years to come. The way people interact with each other is changing rapidly and technology is the major driver of that change. Healthcare will be affected by these changes too and transformation of healthcare delivery will be the result. In the case of healthcare, this transformation will be accelerated because of the unsustainable increase in cost of healthcare delivery, which needs be slowed down. Medical technology will be the catalyser of change healthcare, just like computer systems helped us to become more process oriented. This will have profoundly positive impact on patient outcomes and experiences through a fully integrated and patient-centric healthcare delivery model.
The only thing holdings us back is us, the industry. We are not innovative and entrepreneurial enough. We are holding on to traditional business models and profitability expectations. This blinds us to the opportunities out there. We cannot blame anyone except ourselves. We are behaving like dinosaurs in denial.
We must accept that the world has already changed and there is no way back. Healthcare budgets will no longer grow, and more and more patients will need or demand care. This is the reality and we mustn’t expect that someone else will solve the money issue so that we can continue to do what we think we’re good at. We need to go out there and position ourselves. Medical technology can lead this change but we need to start today.
It is us, the medical device industry. We have a good reputation. We have the relationships with all stakeholders – doctors, CEOs of hospitals, administration, payers and politicians.
Patients will not have to go to an expensive place called a ‘hospital’ if it is not absolutely necessary. Homecare will be key and medical technology will play a key role in keeping patients at home, potentially in combination with new business models around care.
By actually doing it and showing the world that we have greater capabilities and skills than people thought. Besides this the future will be all about partnerships – nobody can do all of this alone. We will need to share accountability, responsibility and profits.
Healthcare will use all of the social media we see today and more. Alongside this there will be important new care models for specific diseases.
This is the age in which the healthcare models of the next century will be developed. We had better have a seat at the table!
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