‘Changing Business Operations’ Top Priority in Healthcare

Michelle Remo, “Big 4″ observer
March 15, 2012 /

A new survey by KPMG has uncovered that healthcare professionals view their number one priority as changing business operations to drive down cost. It also shows that this focus outweighs their desire to respond to regulatory change.

KPMG’s Business Leaders Survey – based on the views of 3,000 business leaders from across Europe and the Middle East – goes on to reveal that 1 in 5 within the health sector recognise the need to adapt to take into account changing customer and stakeholder behaviour. Although low in number, this figure is still higher than the national average comfortable with change (18 percent).

Mark Britnell, chairman and partner of KPMG’s global healthcare practice, says: “Given the current state of the economy, it’s no surprise that cost cutting is top of the agenda. However, with just 6 per cent suggesting that a reaction to regulatory change should be a priority, questions should be asked about how healthcare will succeed in a changing world.

“In the UK, and elsewhere, we are on the cusp of major changes to the way healthcare provision is administered. In part this is a result of changing demographics, but it is also driven by the demands of patients. Healthcare providers need to be ready to respond, whether their response is driven by regulation or populist demand.”

The survey highlights that over three quarters of respondents (77 percent) believe the private sector will become increasingly involved in public health – both in terms of direct medical provision and outsourced, back office, functions.

There is also a believe, shared by 66 percent of respondents, that biological characteristics will be examined and used to provide ‘customised’ treatments for patients. Many respondents (77 per cent) also suggest that there will be a greater shift to ‘outcome based commissioning’ and ‘payment by results’ to drive up the quality of care and drive down costs.

Mark Britnell concluded: “Changes will be made to the way healthcare is delivered to make sure people are given the most clinically effective treatment, but also the most cost effective. In reality this means that we will see more countries in Europe and beyond moving away from pure tax funded healthcare provision to a model based on co-payments and shared risk.”

 

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