Surviving Coronavirus Pandemic & Thriving on the Other Side: Rapid Innovation & Telehealth

By May 20, 2020 Partners
Surviving Coronavirus Pandemic. Rapid Innovation & Virtual Telehealth Visits. health plans, health systems, provider organizations and health information exchanges. Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI). WEDI 2020 Virtual event. World Health Care Congress. WHCC. HCEG Webinar Series.

In just a couple of months’ time, the coronavirus pandemic has impacted healthcare delivery across the world in ways that most health plans, health systems, provider organizations, health information exchanges, government and non-governmental standards & research organizations were simply not prepared for. While resuscitating their organizations by offering telehealth is certainly appropriate at this time, to thrive beyond the pandemic requires rapid innovation, accelerating digital transformation initiatives, and expanding the capabilities and scale of virtual, telehealth services.

As we pass the midpoint of May, HCEG and its sponsor partners have presented content aimed at not only helping leaders resuscitate their organizations to survive these tough times but also thrive on the other side of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Highlights of May’s Virtual Sessions Presented by HCEG Partners

The Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI) kicked off HCEG’s Sponsor Partner Virtual Events for the month of May 2020 with its WEDI 2020 Virtual Conference. This digital event took place for a couple hours over each of three days.  Healthcare executives, thought leaders, and change-makers from public and private organizations on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic shared information about the following:

In addition, timely and information-rich content on Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resource (FHIR) use cases – including the Da Vinci Project Level Set and Implementation Guides – were presented by Steve Posnack, Deputy National Coordinator, ONC and Alexandra Mugge, Deputy Chief Health Informatics, CMS.WEDI 2020 Virtual data exchange-related roadblocks, practical aspects of new ONC interoperability rules, and Federal Telehealth Policy Actions in Response to COVID19

Recordings, Content & Insight Supporting Healthcare Innovation

The information shared in the multi-day WEDI 2020 Virtual event underscored that effective health information exchange has never been greater. The content is one example of the value WEDI offers its members and we’re pleased to share select portions of that content here in partnership with WEDI.

See Recordings, Content & Insight Shared at WEDI 2020 Virtual Conference and visit for more information and insight to help you and your organization survive and thrive across the coronavirus pandemic.

RELATED: WEDI’s Summer Forum – August 4th – 5th, 2020

“Necessity is the Mother of Invention”

On Cinco de Mayo, HCEG’s Executive Director Ferris Taylor opened up moderation of “The Silver Lining of COVID-19: Accelerate Innovation on the Road to Transformation” with an English-language proverb: “Necessity is the mother of invention” – roughly meaning: the primary driving force for most new inventions is a need.

In response to Ferris’s quote, Peter Kung, VP & Chief Innovation Officer, at SCL Health noted: “COVID19 has changed, overnight, how people will interact with the healthcare system.”

WHCC World Health Care Congress Webinar

This webinar, presented by our partner World Health Care Congress, shared additional insight from Peter Kung and leaders of other large healthcare systems on how their organizations have been changing their innovation programs over the last couple of months; and how specific actions they are taking now will position them to not only survive the pandemic but thrive afterward.

See a recording of this webinar here.

Huge Growth in Virtual Visits – Telehealth’s Breakthrough Moment?

Michelle Stansbury of Houston Methodist Hospital related how before the COVID19 pandemic, her organization provides about 2000 virtual encounters per month.  Now, telehealth consultations are being performed at a 101k per month run rate and climbing. Michelle shared how her organization transformed their “Innovation Center” into a “Telehealth Training Center” and suggested people check out this story on how that was accomplished. Michelle also offered a personal tour to interested parties.

Michelle also shared how the ‘Clinic of the Future’ will be supported by “ambient listening” with smart speakers installed in patient rooms to allow patients to self-serve: play music, communicate with loved ones, interact with the internet, etc.

Sustainability of Telehealth After the Pandemic

Ferris Taylor asked panelists:  How are payers keeping up financially with the new rules on payment for telehealth services? Is this ‘sustainable’ or will reimbursement return to pre-pandemic models?

Daniel J Durand of LifeBridge Health suggested that it will be up to “people, patients, and voters to demand and clamor for more telehealth services and value-based care arrangements; otherwise progress made due to COVID19 may be lost.”

Emma Fauss of Medical Informatics, a vendor of patient monitoring and real-time predictive analytics, shared that “it’s a bit of fallacy that many people think that telehealth services and its many variations are all a direct, 1-to-1 use case replacement for traditional office visits and other procedures.” Emma went on to propose that combinations of traditional physical and rapidly emerging virtual encounters will augment each other and should be integrated into your workflows.

SCL Health’s Peter Kung offered that “Economic pressure on Medicare and other government programs dictate a march toward value-based care and continued use of virtual services.”

Key Takeaways on “The Silver Lining of COVID-19

Ferris wrapped up the webinar by asking panelists to share 1 or 2 takeaways for leaders’ intent on ensuring that their healthcare organization not only survives the pandemic but thrives afterward – however the ‘new normal’ turns out to be. Here are their replies:

“Doing something new well requires that you not be afraid to ask people who know more about a subject than you do. Figure out the perspectives of others who have come before you.” – Daniel J Durand

“Dynamic pressures are forcing people and companies to be innovative. You don’t get extra points for originality. Start somewhere, iterate, and expect to pivot as you learn more.” – Peter Kung

“If you don’t know where to start, reach out to others. Avoid the pitfalls others have made.” – Michelle Stansbury

“It’s all about execution. With the new normal, MANY small innovations – changes, shifts, and pivots – will be the norm to build a new path forward.” – Emma Fauss

Innovations in Managing Healthcare Consumer Goals & Messaging

Our next virtual event intended to assist health plans and risk-bearing health systems with surviving the coronavirus pandemic – and thriving post-pandemic takes place on Thursday, May 21st, 2020 at 11:00 am PT / 2:00 pm ET. Our sponsor Zipari presents Breaking Through the Barriers to Better Consumer Experience.HCEG May 2020 Webinar Series event presented by our sponsor partner Zipari

A Consumer Experience (CX) framework built upon consumer experience technology that healthcare organizations can use to prioritize and manage consumer goals and messaging during COVID-19 will be presented. Actionable information and ideas on streamlining outreach to specific individuals prioritized across-departmental objectives will be shared.

Register for this Complimentary Webinar Here

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