Oliver Wyman’s 2023 Health Innovation Summit (OWHIC) brought hundreds of healthcare leaders together for three days of presentations and discussions on the most important issues in the industry. One of the biggest of these is artificial intelligence and attendees at the Chicago conference examined how healthcare organizations can cut through the hype around generative AI to adopt solutions that are both practical and effective.
Following the event, Eric Lu, a principal in Oliver Wyman’s digital and health and life sciences practices, talked about a few of the themes that emerged from those conversations. For more of his impressions from OWHIC, watch the video below.
Disruption in the healthcare industry won’t happen by itself
While AI technology undeniably holds great promise for the healthcare industry, unlocking it won’t just occur automatically. It requires collaboration between all stakeholders and skillful tailoring of every new innovation, as well as overcoming many challenges and constraints. Home care, currently an area of major investment, is a good example. AI has great potential to transform how care is delivered, monitored, and communicated in the home. But, as one panel at the conference highlighted, disparate groups must first come together to improve the underlying infrastructure for AI-driven technologies — particularly access to Wi-Fi in rural areas where home care can be the most needed.
Consider business and consumer needs first
With an ever-advancing ability to create exciting new AI solutions, healthcare companies may be tempted to quickly push ahead toward the Next Big Thing. But AI isn’t a one-size-fits-all proposition in healthcare, where consumers’ care needs, engagement preferences, and underlying economics can vary widely. It’s crucial to start with — and stay focused on — the specific consumers or market you are targeting, as well as the business objective you want to accomplish. An unyielding focus on those elements will ensure that you avoid getting distracted by appealing but extraneous applications.
AI’s impact on the industry is poised to skyrocket
There was a lot of discussion among OWHIC attendees about how to capitalize on the momentum in the AI space. The opportunities at stake go well beyond just coming up with AI-enabled improvements for tasks that humans have traditionally performed. Instead, the industry should reimagine the very nature of our relationship with the technology, figuring out ways that AI can transform how we work in healthcare to deliver far greater value. This is the key to finally realizing the disruption that many in the industry have long been anticipating.