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Looking Forward to 2016—Challenges and Opportunities Abound

The healthcare industry continues to experience a profound transformation. Industry pundits expected big changes in 2015 and they were correct. The Affordable Care Act has been an expected driver for change during the past year, along with do-it-yourself healthcare where mobile medical devices are allowing providers to transfer some basic monitoring tasks to patients. We saw new entrants to the healthcare market such as Apple and Google, who are pushing technologies in the smartphone and wearables space and retailers like Target and pharmacy chains such as Walgreens and CVS Caremark are answering the demands for better healthcare access and affordability.

Delivering quality coordinated care, expanding population health initiatives and providing consumers with greater pricing transparency for medical services continued to evolve as our healthcare industry is slowly taking shape as a true consumer-driven market.

The healthcare industry is rapidly evolving and therefore, our healthcare journal, MiraMed’s The Focus, must deliver content our readers will find valuable. I believe we have hit the mark with this quarter’s edition of The Focus. I am hopeful you think so as well.

We are pleased to introduce several new contributors to The Focus. Sheldon Hamburger, a consultant with the Aristone Group, has addressed a hot topic in healthcare today with his article The New CJR Program: Everything You Need (But May Not Want) to Know. Phil C. Solomon, Vice President of Global Services at MiraMed, has taken an interesting tact by explaining how the healthcare industry needs to treat patients more like customers in his article Will Thinking Like Apple Change the Healthcare Customer Service Paradigm? In his article Patient Protection? Who is the Bogeyman in the Room?, Dr. Alan M. Preston, a professor in the Healthcare Management MBA program at Texas Health and Science University, discusses how the industry needs to change the perspective about how patients are being protected in the era of healthcare reform.

Another contributor to The Focus is Erik Wahl. He is a best-selling entrepreneur, successful speaker, author and philanthropist who has contributed the article 5 Traits of Creative Leaders (And How to Become One). His experiences as a corporate keynote speaker have given him a unique perspective about how to develop strong leadership skills. He shares those insights in his article.

We are proud to welcome back three authors that have been featured in past editions. Nathaniel Lacktman, healthcare attorney at Foley & Lardner, has authored an article titled, 2016 Forecast: What to Expect from Telemedicine. He outlines five key trends that will drive telemedicine’s continued growth and transformation in healthcare delivery for 2016. Bird Blitch, the CEO of Patientco, discusses how high deductible and consumer-driven health plans are negatively affecting point of service collections in his article, A Roadmap for Revenue Success at the Point of Service. And lastly, David Johnson, CEO of 4sight Health, has written an interesting article, Value Rules: Playbook for Post-Reform Healthcare which highlights how fee-for-service payments to hospitals, doctors and pharmaceutical companies are affecting how Americans pay for their healthcare services.

I hope this edition of The Focus provides you with insightful articles that address many of the challenges and opportunities facing today’s healthcare leaders. As always, I welcome your feedback and suggestions about how we can improve our idea-driven healthcare journal.

I wish you and your family good health and happiness as we enter 2016 with hopeful expectations. Happy New Year!

With best wishes, 

Tony Mira
President and CEO


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