At the recent SHSMD Connections Conference, there was a lot of buzz throughout the sessions and in the exhibit hall about the enormous pressure to keep pace in rapidly evolving markets.
It wasn’t too long ago that change was slow – or at least more manageable. But those days are now widely seen as ancient history in markets large and small. That’s due in part to two factors – (1) changing competitive landscape and (2) new insights through the emergence of next-level data sets.
When hospitals or health systems used to consider the competition that basically meant the hospital on the other side of the city or the next town over. Today that competitive landscape now includes urgent care centers, free-standing ERs, ambulatory surgery centers, and retailers. Additionally, mergers and acquisitions are happening at a rapid pace, altering partnerships and the view of traditional competitors locally, regionally and nationally. This is a hornet’s nest of organizations vying for a larger slice of patient volume.
Competing more aggressively for patients means you have to be able to understand every facet of the local population, and what is driving the consumption of healthcare services in a market or region. We’ve talked in the past about next-level demographics – data points that better define segments of the population beyond standard U.S. Census demographics – but the conversation at SHSMD was more nuanced and sophisticated. Here are a few examples of questions I received:
- How can population characteristics be utilized to tailor services to the right locations?
- What can we distill from market drivers that will help us understand where which changes are coming?
- Can we discern cause and effect in order to course correct in a timely manner?
- What can we glean from market dynamics that will allow us to move strategic imperatives in other functions forward?
We’ve been ahead of this curve, and have built our iVantage Market Intelligence platform to enable planners, marketers and hospital leadership teams better understand their markets. Data sources, which are mapped to explicit standards and normalized, combine with an integrated mapping tool to provide users with a unique, dynamic view of their market (i.e. drive-time analysis). This is particularly important for organizations relying on centralized, shared service models which require decision-makers to be experts on markets outside of their immediate geography.
If you’d like to learn more about iVantage Market Intelligence, drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. Always happy to answer questions or serve as a sounding board for ways to improve your planning function.