Skip to main content

Is Healthcare A Drag?

Yes, says McKinsey in this article on reducing the drag on the American Economy.  Fixing healthcare is first on the agenda.

GDP growth is not going to happen "...until we free ourselves from four anchors that have acted as a drag on growth in this country for many years now: lagging productivity in healthcare, education, energy and infrastructure, and government services."


"In 2008, the United States spent $2.3 trillion on healthcare—that’s more than we spent on food, and more than China spent on everything. Adjusted for population, we spend $650 billion more on healthcare than any other developed country, yet our outcomes are no better. Much of this $650 billion in excess costs is driven by characteristics of our system that have proven difficult to change, including unusually high costs for outpatient programs, local market oligopolies, a failure to apply known best practices, price-insensitive patients who don’t see the cost of their healthcare and contribute little toward paying for it, and inefficient healthcare administration.

"Recently passed healthcare reform dramatically expands coverage, but we must now shift our attention to bending the cost curve. With an aging population, the demand for healthcare services will inevitably rise—indeed, even throughout the great recession, unfilled positions in healthcare in the United States have never dropped below 500,000. We need to find ways of meeting current and future demand at lower costs. Unless we do so, we will never be able to make progress on the deficit or overcome such a large “productivity tax” on our economic growth. So how do we achieve a more productive and value-based healthcare system? The way to start is by demanding more transparency, by designing better incentives, and by scaling approaches we already know work across the country."


Popular posts from this blog

Becoming Consumer Friendly In Five Easy Steps...Or Not

An article at offers hospitals 5 steps to becoming more consumer friendly.

If you still think there's a secret sauce to your hospital becoming more "consumer friendly," these 5 steps are as good a place to start as any.  Unfortunately, it's a little like that old Steve Martin comedy bit where he says he'll teach you how to be rich. The first step is to go find a million dollars.

Step 1 from the article is realizing that "...a Medicare beneficiary with chronic conditions is different from a young mom who brings her kids in for an annual check-up." This is market segmentation for beginners, and, yes, one size decidedly does not fit all. I'm sure your marketing team's been saying this for a while.

Steps 2-5: have a strategy, metrics, a champion and resources. OK. Hard to argue with any of those.

But those things, alone or together, won't overcome culture. They're important components to be sure, but insufficient without a …

Another Day, Another App, Another Satisfied Customer

How might health care providers use technology to turn customers' mobile phones into information displays and ordering devices? A few years ago, the NY Times outlined how retailers are doing it...
"(Designer Norma) Kamali is at the forefront of a technological transformation coming to many of the nation’s retailers. They are determined to strengthen the link between their physical stores and the Web, and to use technology to make shopping easier for consumers and more lucrative for themselves.

Cisco Systems, the supplier of networking equipment and services for the Internet, is also a leader in the field. The company’s Mobile Concierge system is capable of connecting customers’ smartphones to retailers’ wireless networks — so a shopper could type “Cheez Whiz” into a cellphone, then pinpoint its location in the store." Ms. Kamali's boutique installed a technology called ScanLife, "allowing people to scan bar codes on merchandise and obtain details about the…

Why Change Happens, Or Not

From LinkedIn: