The Healthcare Quadrant with the Greatest Need
A recent article written by Christina Farr identified areas of focus (and importantly, the lack thereof) of different healthcare innovators and companies as categorized in quadrants of a foursquare box. The foursquare box was created by Dr. Krishna Yeshwant, General Partner of GV, Alphabet‘s venture firm, and was a topic of conversation at HLTH 2018.
Dr. Yeshwant’s box focuses on understanding the customer through the lens of a company’s placement (high or low) along two dimensions: social need complexity and medical need complexity.
The four quadrants are defined accordingly:
- Low medical, low social needs
- High medical, low social needs
- Low medical, high social needs
- High medical, high social needs
The article continues that Dr. Yeshwant finds healthcare venture capitalists often concentrated in the high medical/low social quadrant, while tech entrepreneurs are often found in the low medical/low social quadrant. At the same time, healthcare industry veterans, according to the article, migrate more to the high medical/high social quadrant, home to major drivers of cost to the healthcare economy.
Dr. Yeshwant concludes that there is a scarcity of deals in the low medical/high social quadrant and cites needs in this sector that include addiction issues as well as those who are subject to homeless and transportation deficits. Many in the healthcare space refer to this sector as social health. Social health is measured by the ability to interact with one’s community and the environment they live in.
This oft-overlooked social health quadrant and the many people who are represented in this sector—many who will migrate to high medical/high social needs as chronic disease manifests―has caused us at Shearwater Health to ask, “What can we do to serve this population?” “How does our Clinical Process Outsourcing (CPO®) model support not just the high medical quadrants, but also the low medical quadrants?”
In our estimation, this population is one where engagement and relationship-building can impact outcomes and alter behavior. We firmly believe the best way to drive such impact is via human engagement, driven by technology. We define the aligning of clinical professionals with technology as an augmented intelligence rather than artificial intelligence. This creates a structure where scale of reach is equally important as clinical sensitivity to a person’s ever-changing health condition.
Serving a population of low medical/high social needs requires scale of human talent and must be performed in a cost-effective manner, with escalation to local providers, when indicated. For organizations that are agreeable to aligning a local workforce with Shearwater professionals working from HITRUST certified and URAC accredited CPO® centers in the Philippines, the ability to impact this important population is available today.
Chief Strategy Officer