Service Outreach

The Healthcare Business Institute will engage in active outreach to the members of the healthcare ecosystem. There are several different areas of cooperation possible with different members of the ecosystem. We outline below in detail the structure of the healthcare ecosystem and the opportunities for collaboration with the different members of that ecosystem.

Value Chain Analysis of the Healthcare Ecosystem

Care provider organizations – hospitals, specialist clinics, etc. - are the focal organizations. With these as reference firms, the healthcare value chain is outlined below.

Supply Side

The supply side of the healthcare value chain system (ecosystem) consists of direct suppliers and indirect suppliers of care delivery organizations. The principal categories of these companies include:

  • Device Makers: Medtronic, GE Healthcare, etc.
  • Pharmaceutical Companies: Pfizer, Roche, Novartis, etc.
  • Medical Supplies Providers: Providers of consumable supplies, categorized as non-durables these are often not manufacturer specific and can be sourced from multiple suppliers. Products in this category include syringes, catheters, cannulas, etc., Larger companies in this space are usually supply chain aggregators such as Cardinal Health and McKesson Corp.
  • HIT Service Providers:
    • Enterprise Solution Providers: Enterprise-wide EMR based systems such as Epic, GeCentricity, Athenahealth, etc.,
    • Providers of multiple specialized products: Cerner Corp and Optum
    • Solutions and Service Providers: Brightside IT, MediQuore Solutions, etc.
    • Emerging Tech Platforms: Wearable devices (Fitbit, Apple), mobile health solutions (Athenacare, eMocha, etc.).
  • Auxiliary Service Providers: Services such as 3P Logistics (DHL, Promptus LLC, etc.) and retail order fulfillers (CVS, Walgreens, etc.).
  • The Texas Medical Center: The TMC is a collection of hospitals and related service providers located in Houston. Of particular interest to the institute is the TMC3 initiative as well the TMCX startup incubators.
Demand Side

Value chain players on the demand side include financing entities (HMO’s, PPOs, etc.), and policy makers (government and related entities such as FDA, CDC, CMS, etc.). The principal category of entities include:

  • Financing/Insurance: Humana, Aetna, Blue Cross-Blue Shield, etc.
  • Policy Makers and Other Research Funding Agencies: NIH, CMS, CDC, etc.

At the center of the healthcare value chain, these include:

  • Large Hospital Systems: Often categorized as IDNs (integrated delivery networks) such as HCA Healthcare, Kaiser Permanente, Ascension Health, Universal Health Services.
  • Specialist Tertiary Care Hospitals: Considered as super-specialty tertiary care providers and include centers such as Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, Johns Hopkins, UT MD Anderson, etc.
  • Specialized Care Providers: Specialized hospitals dealing with specific medical needs and certain disease categories including children's hospitals (TCH, Boston Children’s Hospital, etc.), seniors' (geriatric) hospitals, rehabilitation hospitals, (Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital), trauma centers, etc.
  • In addition to these there are smaller stand-alone care providers, community physicians’ centers and hospitals, birthing clinics, etc.

There are other key members of the ecosystem that have less formal (contractual or regulatory) relationships with healthcare providers such as colleges of medicine, colleges of public health, HR service providers, etc.

Service Opportunities

Given the structure of the value chain described above, the Institute could have multiple levels of engagement with these entities.

  • Research
    • IT
    • Operations
    • Policy (economics, finance)
    • Organizational Behavior
  • Best Practice Maps
    • Formulating Metrics and KPIs
    • Formulating OKR
  • Assessment of Efficiency & Effectiveness
    • Cost assessment
    • Operational efficiency assessments
    • Linking clinical quality measures (effectiveness) to cost and other measures of efficiency
  • Health IT Governance
    • Analytics
    • Data Governance and Enterprise IT system governance
    • Beast Practices and Metrics
    • Emerging Technology Deployment: Cloud technologies, Telework systems, IoT & Sensors
  • Life Sciences – Start Ups and Entrepreneurial Ventures:
    • New business models in life sciences and healthcare
    • Entrepreneurial ventures focused on specific segments in the healthcare value chain
    • Incubators and VCs in the healthcare ecosystem: new models for valuing healthcare businesses

These opportunities have a common theme - Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). ICT plays several different roles that can be categorized broadly as follows:

  • ICT as Enabler: Emerging technologies and their deployment can enable several key objectives as use of predictive modeling (machine learning and AI), use of IoT to monitor the functioning of the hospital in real time (IoT and Sensors), Cloud based storage and computing, Telemedicine and Telework platforms, etc. are examples of the enabling role played by ICT.
  • ICT as Amplifier of Efficiencies: Here the use of dashboards, use of metrics and KPIs, tracking and predicting outcomes, monitoring supplies and inventories, etc. are some ways in which ICT can amplify the efficiency and effectiveness of care delivery systems.
  • ICT as Connector: linking patient specific monitoring systems such as wearable devices with care providers, use of patient portals and patient-created logs, linking individual patients to healthcare services etc. Here mobile and cloud-based systems play a key role.

There are other ways in which ICT plays a role in the running of hospitals and care delivery organizations, that are well understood and mature in their model of deployment which we do not include here primarily because the need for research in this sphere is minimal.

Engagement with Value Chain

The Institute will reach out to potential partners in all segments of the value chain and begin discussions on potential collaboration efforts. Some of the principal areas that will be of interest to value chain players:

Value Chain Players Best Practices Supply Chain Management Telemedicine Telework Data & IT Governance IoT & Real-Time Monitoring Analytics
Large Hospitals

Device Makers

Pharma Firms

Medical Supplies

Insurance Companies

Health IT Solutions Providers

Value Chain Players Principal Areas of Research
Large Hospitals Best Practices, Supply Chain Management, Telemedicine, Data & IT Governance, IoT & Real-Time Monitoring, Analytics
Device Makers Best Practices, Supply Chain Management, Telework, IoT & Real-Time Monitoring, Analytics
Pharma Firms Supply Chain Management, Telework, IoT & Real-Time Monitoring
Medical Supplies Best Practices, Supply Chain Management, Telework, Data & IT Governance, IoT & Real-Time Monitoring
Insurance Companies Best Practices, Telework, IoT & Real-Time Monitoring, Analytics
Health IT Solutions Providers Best Practices, Telemedicine, Telework, IoT & Real-Time Monitoring, Analytics