Innovation Digest – December 2022 Vol. 1

Society pays for what it values. This came up so many times last week during the Miliken Future of Health Summit, in response to frank questions about why we can’t solve some of the most challenging issues in health care delivery and quality. In my work on health equity, on value assessment and on mental health, this phrase is too often the knowing answer for why we find ourselves still having the same conversations about failure, inadequacy, poor outcomes, and disparities decades later.

Universally, our societal investments tend to focus on crises, unmet need, and “end of pipe” thinking, versus shining the light and resources on prevention, early diagnosis and community-based services and supports. Accelerating focus on social determinants of health and new ways of delivering care are laudable, but they are also creating industries and competitive marketplaces where “new” and “technological” are valued over real-world evidence, community delivery and the expertise of lived experience.

I believe in starting with the right question: what is valuable to the individuals whose health we intend to improve? For someone with mental health or substance use issues living on the streets, it may be stable housing instead of coercive in-patient treatment. For a family battling rare disease, it may be gene therapy and respite care. For a person of color in any disease state, it is having a respectful interaction with health systems and practitioners to ensure early diagnosis and treatment. I’ve heard so often this year that we have the data and the systems to resolve some of the most challenging problems. It appears we still have work to do to clarify what we value, and to demand that the power and resources follow.

In this issue:

  • When hard data points to soft answers: Drawing a new roadmap toward health equity
  • Podcast: Tackling Bias in Health Care Algorithms
  • JPMorgan Is Still Trying to Fix Health Care
  • Physicians worldwide issue clarion call on racism’s impact in medicine
  • Meeting the Burden of Self-management: Qualitative Study Investigating the Empowering Behaviors of Patients and Informal Caregivers
  • Declarations Aren’t Enough. Health Equity Needs Action, Healthcare Execs Say
  • MDIC Publishes White Paper on Using Patient Preference Information for Coverage Decision Making
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