Monday, May 18, 2015

Vegas' Healthcare Lessons: A Field Trip Report

The Population Health Blog spent the last week in Vegas exploring the actuarial, medical, predictive, economic, social and quality dimensions of an important part of the property and casualty insurance industry.

If memory serves, this was the fourth time it was there.  And a lot has changed over the last few years

Naturally, the PHB's commitment to lifelong learning shielded it from Sin City's too-numerous -to-count temptations.  Being in windowless conference rooms from 7 AM to 6 PM prevented it from the succumbing to The Strip's scintillating jewelry displays, blinka-blinka light pollution and siren call of unfavorable risk-transfer arrangements (a.k.a. "gambling").

Plus, having the spouse for company helped, even though she vetoed perfectly reasonable entertainment options like this and this.  As a consequence, the PHB limited itself to an evening show and a variety of interesting eateries. The good news is that, as a result, the field trips outside the meeting venue gave it some time to compare the "old" and today's "new" Vegas to derive some healthcare lessons:

Old Vegas:

Small hotel lobbies, walls, winding walkways.

New Vegas:

Open hotel atriums, mirrors but still winding walkways

Lesson: You don't have to give away the keys to the business to give the consumer the impression of transparency. While healthcare has a long way to go on truly transparent pricing, the PHB suspects there will be a lot of mirrors and winding walkways between where we are now and where we want to go.

Old Vegas:

Rooms at $250 per night

New Vegas:

While rooms on The Strip can be $300 per night, that's comparatively less in inflation adjusted dollars, plus there are remote controlled curtains for the floor to ceiling windows and one, if not two, flat screen TVs.

Lesson: Consumers are expecting more quality at less cost. Healthcare remains an economic outlier.

Old Vegas:

Computerized slot machines

New Vegas:

Computerized insights on the users of the slot machines

Lesson: Knowing background, revenue/cost determinants and risk preferences of your customers is critical.  In healthcare, we call this "big data."

Old Vegas:

Illusionists, Carrot Top, The Osmonds, Elton John and Cirque

New Vegas:

Illusionists, Carrot Top, The Osmonds, Elton John and Cirque in over the top stages and elaborate auditoriums.

Lesson: If you have a winning formula, stick to it and do it better. Even though health insurers may get in the way, more patients will seek you out.

And finally.....

Old Vegas:

Some homeless people

New Vegas:

More homeless people. 

Lesson: The economy recovery is failing the most vulnerable

Image from Wikipedia

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You seem to have figured out a way to have fun in healthcare......