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Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, JPMorgan’s Haven Organization Disbands. What May Be the Next Trending Initiative?

There has been much speculation and commentary in the media recently regarding the end of the collaboration between Berkshire Hathaway, Amazon and JP Morgan Chase, formally known as Haven.

The ideas and efforts those organizations brought together were laudable, but has been proven, redefining healthcare is not an easy project to tackle.

Some progress was made on their goals to rein in costs, improve access and simplify the healthcare process, but a true disruptive result did not materialize. Dramatic change to our healthcare model is a monumental initiative by itself; doing it with three separate and distinct organizations with separate structures, goals and cultures is even more challenging. These organizations should be praised for the efforts they made. The Amazon Care platform with virtual and home-based care, along with their Direct Primary Care models, were two positive outcomes from the collaboration.

Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and J.P Morgan Disband — What Next?

Changes in our healthcare system are inevitable. Much has been written and said about the high cost of services, dysfunctional delivery systems for care, the lack of transparency for the cost of services, and a true “market” to purchase them. However, there are some intriguing initiatives underway which may have true impacts in the near future. Among them are:

  1. Insurance carriers consolidating their product lines to focus on health and pharmacy services.

    While not a new concept, attention should be paid to Aetna/CVS, Anthem, UnitedHealthcare and Cigna. They all have integrated pharmacy and healthcare coverage, which can provide savings, efficiencies, and higher quality through better care management of chronic conditions, early identification of potential disease states and improved adherence to prescription regimens. They are also continuing to morph their products and incorporate technology that will impact the millions of individuals utilizing their services and coverages today.

  2. The emergence of Payviders.

    Payers and providers collaborating or joining together to deliver higher quality care to patients through value-based benefit designs and aligned incentives. These structures take many forms but typically align quality, outcomes and access with financial incentives to provide an overall improved healthcare experience for members, along with reduced costs and enhanced benefits.

  3. Industry owned healthcare delivery models.

    An example is Walmart Health Centers, which focus on providing low-cost, high-quality healthcare. Those facilities include a vast array of services such as primary and urgent care, lab & x-rays, dental, vision and hearing, staffed by physicians and healthcare professionals. Similarly, Aetna/CVS has established HealthHubs across the United States, providing similar services and continue to add more locations. Walgreens announced they are planning to open 500 or more full-service provider offices in collaboration with VillageMD in the next five years. The goal of these entities is to provide high-quality, low-cost healthcare with broad access and pricing transparency.

While the Amazon/Berkshire Hathaway/JPMorgan’s Haven project was exciting and innovative, forward progress and development of new ideas are continuing. The items mentioned above are just a few of the strategies underway that could yield positive results.

There is no “silver bullet” for our healthcare system. The challenges for cost, access, utilization and quality are many and complex. As we continue to navigate through the options and strategies, the underlying focus needs to be reducing costs, more transparency, higher quality and access to care, along with help in maintaining good health. It sounds simple, but we know it’s not. Just ask Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, or JPMorgan.

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