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Health IT Outcomes, US: Associate Vice President in Cognizant’s Center for the Future of Work Says the Era of the Doctor and the Bot is at Our Doorstep

“Digital is more than technology, it is rapid innovation to connect technology, data science, devices, design, and business strategy, as well as people, to change a business process or customer experience,” says Robert Hoyle Brown. “Digital puts the customer, device, organization or business process at the center of real change that improves agility, revenue, and costs.” Excerpts:

“Digital means creating value by connecting the physical world to the digital, or code, world. While mastering digital will be beneficial for healthcare payers and providers, it will also drive a renaissance in how we and future generations stay healthy and thrive in the 21st century. New approaches like telemedicine, robotic-assisted surgery, and AI-augmented diagnosis and prevention will be required to drive the boosts in digitally-driven revenue growth envisioned by industry executives.

What’s the cost of inaction? Being worse than your peer group comes with a high economic price. Companies behind the curve are paying a large annual Laggard Penalty — the difference in both cost and revenue performance due to technology. And over time, it’s enough to change the company.

We asked payers and providers what healthcare work will look like in 2020. The top response — among 78 percent of providers and 74 percent of payers — was the ability to use digital to “contribute more meaningfully,” be it making patients feel better, knowing critical coverage did not slip through the cracks of a bad process handoff or saving the lives of at-risk individuals through better digital information.

Analytics and AI are the top two digital forces respondents say will have either moderate or strong impact on the work of healthcare by 2020. Virtually all providers (100 percent) and payers (98 percent) said it was either moderately or very likely automation would be the leading digital force transforming work, as it would make work more strategic as tasks become automated.

Providers also emphasized automation would require greater technical expertise (95 percent) and greater collaboration with other workers (92 percent). Most payers (94 percent), meanwhile, believe workers will collaborate with smart machines to augment job effectiveness, clearly paving the way for the interplay of smart machines and humans to an ever-greater degree.

In short, the era of “the doctor and the bot” is at our doorstep.”

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