As Chair of Healthcare Innovation at ForbesBooks I have the distinct privilege of meeting and working with individuals who are bringing positive disruption to the healthcare industry. When most of us hear the word disruptive, we think of someone who is loud, boisterous and full of bravado. It’s been my experience that the true disruptive thinker is in fact someone like Larry Hightower, CEO of Vxtra Partners. Larry is a creative genius, master connector and remains behind the scenes while he prepares to take on the seemingly immovable giants of the healthcare industry.
Disruptive thinkers like Larry are playing a game that no one else knows is being played. They are also not afraid to take on paradigm shifts that have entrenched an industry for decades. In fact, many disruptors come from outside of the industry they are changing. We can all now point to Amazon’s acquisition of WholeFoods as a prime example of this phenomenon. I’ve also found that in many cases the disruptor may reside inside the industry they are overhauling, however they are collaborating or bringing in outside ideas that dynamically change the landscape.
As healthcare looks to make the shift from volume to value, it’s going to take disruptive thinkers from inside the healthcare ecosystem and many from the outside to make the necessary transformation happen. Larry has introduced me to people like Dr. David Slosky, who leads an advanced Cardio Oncology program at Vanderbilt and Dr. James Cochran of Texas HIFU Partners who uses high intensity focused ultrasound to treat prostate cancer. There’s also Dr. Zeev Neuwirth of Carolinas Healthcare System who’s popular speech and upcoming book on the topic of ReFraming Healthcare Through Marketing will provide a new lens to examine how healthcare is delivered. It’s healthcare industry insider’s like the disruptors above that will change healthcare from the inside out.
Looking outside the healthcare ecosystem there are the obvious disruptors in the technology players like Apple, Google, Amazon and Microsoft who are making substantial investments in healthcare disruption. However, the true disruption is going to come from less obvious players like Ruth E. Hedges, who leads the Global Crowdfunding Convention. It’s through mechanisms like crowdfunding that disruptors will gain the necessary capital to create the disruption from outside the inner circle of healthcare.
As I gain more and more exposure to disruptive thinkers, my confidence grows in our collective ability to change healthcare for the positive. The shift from volume to value is going to happen and it’s the disruptive thinkers that will get us there on a glide path rather than a cliff dive. It’s the disruptive thinkers both inside and outside the healthcare ecosystem who will improve healthcare for not only our generation, but for generations to come.