This past week HLTH 2018 took place in Las Vegas to touch on the future of healthcare, and with an extensive lineup of speakers such as CEO of Fitbit and executive vice president of CVS Health, questions were asked and answered.
Many topics were covered from testing the waters on the newest technologies to fundamental changes needed in healthcare, and of course, the always trending, blockchain.
Panel speaker and cofounder of Pokitdok Ted Tanner was particularly vocal when it came to blockchain technology, “Cryptocurrencies have been around for 25 years, smart contracts have been around since 1990’s, hashing has been around since the 1960’s. I don’t want to hear anyone asking if this is mature technology,” he said.
Read more expert opinions about blockchain in healthcare at Healthcare Analytics News.
Other technology sectors with gray areas were also tackled, the onset of artificial intelligence in healthcare has attracted an alliance between Google and Fitbit, which rolled out eight new health apps at the conference. Greg Corrado, principal scientist and director of augmented intelligence research at Google, addressed in his presentation the way the technology giant is redefining itself as an artificial intelligence company now concerned with mainstreaming healthcare AI into medical treatment.
Read more about the partnership between Google and Fitbit as well as Google’s new direction, visit SearchHealthIT.
Many observers and those in attendance were anticipating a big announcement from Walmart, possibly its acquisition of Humana. The possibility has been covered in the media for months, but vice president of health transformation Marcus Osbourne teased attendees, stating “I bet many of you have come here expecting some announcement.”
Its grand announcement—change in the healthcare industry.
Healthcaredive goes into more depth on the conversation but left readers with a speculative piece of information to ponder: Walmart executives would have no reason to show up to the conference if the company was not serious about the healthcare industry.
Executive vice president at CVS Health Troy Brennan showed up to speak about digital intelligence and the target groups CVS will focus on as they aim to be “complementary to primary care” rather than competitive.
Under the assumption that the Aetna deal, which has received quite the backlash, will go through these are the groups CVS will zone in on:
- Patients with five common chronic diseases (diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, asthma and depression);
- Fragile patients who disproportionately contribute a large share of total healthcare costs; and
- Transitioning patients from a hospital setting who require readmissions prevention focus.
For more information on “what was and wasn’t said at HLTH 2018” visit Healthcaredive.
Conversations about the event are still buzzing on twitter.