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Emerging Healthcare Technology Trends for Care at Home

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, the home-based care space has seen remarkable advancements. The ensuing public health emergency acted as a catalyst that underscored the critical need for high-quality health care accessible within the comfort of one’s home.

As a result, at-home care emerged as a lifeline and organizations like Axxess were ready to answer the call.

In this Future in Focus interview, Home Health Care News goes one-on-one with Axxess CEO John Olajide to learn about the transformative impact of the pandemic on health care, the role of technology in advancing home-based care and the critical need to reshape policy to meet the evolving needs of a changing landscape.

HHCN: To start, I’ll ask you to look back over the past few years to the very beginning of 2020. From then until now, how would you describe the overall progress home-based care has seen in the U.S. – and what are some of the best examples of that advancement?

Olajide: Home-based care has seen tremendous advancements, especially with the onset of COVID. People were stuck in their home and they needed to get all their services delivered to them. Naturally, they were all very anxious about their health. Hospitals were then overwhelmed with people, so it was the perfect storm that really set up the need for people to get quality health care where they are.

The COVID pandemic really helped the general population see what health care at home is and what the possibilities are.

A lot of people engaged with home care in ways they never had before and understood what it could look like on a much deeper level.

In what ways has your own organization advanced during this period?

At Axxess, we believe the future of all health care is in the home. We’re trying to solve for care at home globally. We want to increase access to quality health care services for all people, wherever they are.

We know our technology can help empower people, empower caregivers and empower patients to get access to care where they are. With people being in the home more than ever before, our technology becomes the single most critical resource or tool they need to be able to deliver these health care services.

Candidly, we saw tremendous growth following the pandemic and the growth has only accelerated because people depend on our technology platform to get the work done.

In your view, what are the top 2-3 ways that technology specifically has advanced home-based care in recent years?

Standardization. In the past, every documentation was on paper and was all over the place. Now there’s interoperability in a way that’s a lot more meaningful. And lastly, there’s the quality of care that is being delivered now because the standards are higher.

There’s more visibility and there’s more transparency about all the care that’s been developed. I speak from the perspective of: what should a consumer want? What should caregivers want? I think fundamentally that’s the most important thing.

What emerging technology trend do you see disrupting home-based care most over the next 5 years, and why?

An empowered consumer having all of this technology in their hands is what’s going to really drive the type of accelerated change that we’re going to see in this space. No different than what’s happened in other industries.

I’ve often wondered why, even from a policymaker perspective, why some of the policies are at odds with what our consumers want. Now with consumers being more empowered and more informed, they’re going to be making demands of providers, of payers, of the regulators and also connecting in their communities in ways that they’ve never done before.

What trends, challenges or opportunities do you see helping – or hindering – the advancement of home-based care over the next 12 months?

I think there are opportunities to leverage technology to really empower the workforce to be more efficient. I’m sure you’ve heard of staffing shortages in the industry, but we see things differently. By using the data we have, we realize that there are opportunities to optimize the workforce and use the Uber model to really make sure where there’s excess capacity, or maybe there’s not enough capacity, we can optimize the marketplace for efficiency.

Make no mistake —the future of our industry is going to be a shared workforce model where there will be a lot of visibility and transparency where the workforce has control and flexibility they need to see patients.

I also think there’s an opportunity to leverage training models. Axxess has a training and certification program where we level up skills and standards in the entire industry. We’re providing that at no cost to the entire industry.

Thinking about the workforce model differently and making sure people are doing the work that they like is a tremendous opportunity. Health care providers also need to understand that we cannot keep doing things the way we’ve done it and expect different results. They have to lean into these newer technologies. It’s a mindset shift. As an industry, I think we need to lean into the changes and opportunities a lot more than we have.

An empowered workforce and an empowered consumer — with technology — is game changing.

Editorial Note: This article was originally published on Home Health Care News. We are sharing this piece in two parts; this is part one.


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