Can health care become pain-free?

Performance optimization

  • Share

EY - Leisa Maddoux

Leisa Maddoux
EY US Health Performance Optimization Leader

“ In today’s complex health landscape, cost avoidance does not necessarily produce overall savings. Instead, organizations should take a longer-term view and smartly seek ways to innovate and optimize operations in ways that curtail total costs. ”

Health organizations live under increasing expectations not only to lower costs but also to provide more value to consumers. Given these financial pressures, it’s tempting for administrators to adopt a strict cost-avoidance approach. But cost avoidance alone is shortsighted in a landscape that’s growing more sophisticated, streamlined and efficient in its approaches to patient care.

When an organization chooses an initiative or strategy only to save money, the end result can be detrimental to patient outcomes and long-term revenue, leading to a higher overall cost of care. What’s needed is a parallel approach: investigating the short-term needs of the organization to ensure financial health, while utilizing an operating model strategy, evidence-based protocols, and advanced analytics and innovations to decrease the overall cost of care. By adopting this new approach, organizations can smartly save money in specific areas that affect patient care the least, while making choices that can achieve better and more sustainable outcomes for the long term.

Investments in optimization include a mix of strategies that produce more efficient, effective and sustainable care delivery models. In this approach, alignment among the operational, clinical and IT teams of an organization is crucial to ensure optimization across the whole of the care delivery spectrum.

Today’s health environment provides ample tools for organizations to approach cost optimization in a truly innovative way. Emerging technologies, such as robotic process automation (RPA) and new approaches to redesign and improve the digital consumer experience, for example, are already changing the market and the way we do business and can provide radical process change resulting in long-term shifts to the cost curve.

As an organization makes the transition to an optimization model, they are able to take a proactive response to the changing regulatory and reimbursement environments and the implications for their business.

Through purpose-led transformations, such as performance optimization, organizations realize a type of financial stability that empowers them to look past the present and invest in opportunities for growth and exceptional patient care.