Points of View

Triangulating Comms for Better, Coordinated Health and Care

Jan 10, 2016 Barbra McGann

The recent acquisition of NaviNet by NantHealth makes sense in showing how the healthcare industry can deliver on the “Triple Aim” of better health, an improved care experience, and lower costs through more intelligent healthcare.


How so?


This acquisition will help create both a network and platform to enable the coordination of care, targeted clinical trial participation, and value-based reimbursement, for example, between critical players: health care providers, health plans, and pharmaceutical companies. While it is not a magic pill to solve all of health care’s ills around the cost and quality of care, it certainly addresses a key requirement in making an impact: coordinated data and communications.


A critical lynchpin to improving medical and administrative outcomes in health care is the Health Care Professional or Provider (HCP). The HCP is the most common—and most trusted—link between the health care consumers and all the other players in the ecosystem. The Health Care Professional has a finger on the pulse of its patient population, and is at the heart of its activity. So any company in the health care ecosystem—be it a pharmaceutical, medical device, or health care IT for example—that wants to impact health, care, and cost of the patient, will need to have an effective link with the Health Care Professional. And any approach or tool to engage the time and attention these already beleaguered professionals will need to be straightforward. Recognizing this critical role, two separate companies—that are now coming together through an acquisition—set up networks and systems that connected the healthcare provider and health plan (NaviNet) and the healthcare provider and pharma R&D (NantHealth).


NaviNet was born out of insurance payers looking to address the cost of care; it started with insurance verification and expanded into population health, such as identifying and prompting clinicians when patients are due for diagnostics like mammograms. NantHealth is a health care digital technology and services company focused on enabling precision medicine for cancer care. Oncologists can use the system of data and analytics to help determine causes and therapies for cancer patients. The goal of NantHealth is to coordinate and integrate a system of data to enable treatment for a patient’s life span: from illness, to wellness, and maintenance, and have real-time access to the latest data and insights throughout the time. This is about providing Accessible and Actionable Data to patients, physicians, payers, and researchers.


For example, physicians can search data to match and diagnose cancer and therapies and provide patient records to insurers to make it easier for someone in need of surgery to get authorization; patients and physicians can receive alerts about cancer clinical trials that meet their specifications; and researchers can search for relevant participants for clinical trials.  All of this, of course, within the bounds of HIPPA regulations. The point is that digital technology as becoming more secure and flexible, performance-based pay and regulation is driving the healthcare industry to turn to collaboration as a key way to deliver against the Triple Aim. Moves like this acquisition should be increasingly common in 2016 by helping to triangulate the market players to create more “intelligent healthcare.”