Payers are at an important crossroads in their evolution since the passage of the Affordable Care Act. They’re developing their own devices and getting involved with health IT accelerators. Some believe they should play a greater role in drug development. And if invest in medical devices to that list. As Dr. Dave Albert, the founder and chief medical officer for AliveCor, told MedCity News at the mHealth Summit this week, it could save payers money in the future.
By helping engage patients in managing their care, mobile health and other technologies are helping to flag up potential problems earlier, reducing the need for hospitalization.
“We’re hearing that payers are engaged,” said Albert. ”Now they have to learn that in order to save money and prosper they will have to invest in new technologies and new methods.”
Among the new models that could replace fee for service to reduce healthcare costs are capitation, bundled payments and Accountable Care Organizations’ shared savings model.
AliveCor is riding high this week after receiving 510(k) clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration for its iPhone heart monitor on Monday. The device can print out hospital quality electrocardiograms. Albert pointed out the device was designed to help people with chronic heart problems manage their conditions. That’s a bit of a contrast from many of the mobile health technologies at the mHealth Summit that were focused on helping healthy people track their vital signs and providing other health and wellness applications.