Sunday, May 21, 2023

Challenges of the Changing Healthcare Landscape


According to a recent NY Times article (shared by Gil Thelen), primary care practices are being acquired by giant corporations/ hospital groups that now control most of the healthcare industry.  It seems that the motivation for this activity is access to patient databases as well as huge Medicare payments from the U.S. government that provide significant incremental sources of profit.

Corporations being interested in profit is not new.   However, it does give us an opportunity to “read the tea leaves” to prepare for any impact on PDPC.  In my opinion, we need to be prepared to address possible profitability ramifications of PDPC.

The pursuit of profit takes place in the context of the organization’s strategic plans.  Many industries, including healthcare, are using TQM (Total Quality Management) as a framework for achieving a balanced business approach.  With TQM, the primary goal is to build loyalty by consistently meeting/exceeding customer expectations. To do this, creative and innovative planning is required.  Effective execution of those plans involves commitment (ongoing focus on the primary goal by the entire organization), accountability (quantifying the degree to which

the primary goal was met), and continuous improvement (ongoing commitment to TQM). 

Reference:  Frontiers | The impact of integrated quality management-based health services on general hospital quality (


Medical organizations have become increasingly competitive.  They will have to generate an acceptable level of profit to survive.   But to survive and, better yet, thrive they will need to look beyond profit.  They can be sure that their competition will be doing that.  Continous Relationship Management (CRM) that builds loyalty at the individual consumer level is now possible due to advances in computer technology. 

Reference:  Corporate Giants Buy Up Primary Care Practices at Rapid Pace - The New York Times (


I can’t think of a better way to build consumer loyalty than a unique individualized program that goes beyond standard care and exceeds patient expectations by taking a holistic, team-based approach that focuses on quality of life for patients, caregivers, and families.  This is a value-added service that is not widely available.   If it is delivered in a TQM/CRM environment it is not only consumer-centric, but it may also offer a significant competitive advantage.  The clear preference shown for PDPC in our first study is a good indication of what can be expected.

The cost of delivering this service is a factor that must be considered.  With that in mind, it would be useful if the value of PDPC could somehow be quantified and compared to the cost.  Of course, the value can’t be measured in dollars and cents.

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