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The Second Life of Hospitals: What Hospitals Should Do When Healthcare Goes Home

Healthcare Business Today – by Jonathon Swersey

EPAM Continuum’s Jonathon Swersey spoke with Healthcare Business Today about the challenge’s hospitals faced since the onset of the pandemic and what they should be doing to be ready for tomorrow.

It’s ironic that healthcare, the sector charged with caring for the ill, has been one of the worst impacted by the pandemic. By April, 1.4 million healthcare workers had lost their jobs, with approximately 135,000 of those employed in hospitals. The financial losses to hospitals will be “catastrophic” at an estimated $323.1 billion by the end of 2020. And that’s conservative. With people continuing to put off elective surgeries and regular checkups, the toll could be even greater. In-patient volumes have dropped by 19.5% from 2019 averages, while outpatient volumes have decreased by 34.5%. Most hospitals and health systems do not see a return to 2019 numbers anytime soon. COVID has obviously exposed an unpreparedness for pandemic response in the US but, more importantly, also revealed an existing and massive weakness in the financial stability of America’s hospitals.

This confluence of factors has jolted the hospital world. With eyes now wide open, what should legacy hospitals be doing to be ready for tomorrow? What becomes of their purpose? Their identity? Their operational and strategic and business focus? 

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