Health Care Imperatives for the 2020s – 2023 Update: Embracing Whole Person Health

Manatt Health’s new Health Care Imperatives for the 2020s report, titled “2023 Update: Embracing Whole Person Health,” recognizes the challenges that emerged in 2022 and the important opportunities they presented.

In the report, the third in our Health Care Imperatives series, we advance “Whole Person Health” as a unifying theme to establish a “north star” for the alignment of needs across the health system. The concept of Whole Person Health recognizes the benefit of aligning services from wellness through acute to post-acute care. It also embraces the need to focus public and private resources on aligning downstream health care services with upstream social and community resources. We have also added an 11th imperative, “Innovating and Advancing Care at Home,” which has long been a critical missing link in aligning the health care system around those who need it the most, particularly the aging and those suffering with chronic and debilitating conditions.

The imperatives examined in the report include:

  1. Ensure Access to Coverage and Care. Improve access to needed services at every point in the health care system. Minimize coverage losses due to the end of the federal continuous coverage requirements.
  2. Achieve Health Equity Through Collective and Sustained Actions. Work upstream to solve structural issues of social need while continuing to improve access to and quality of health care.
  3. Stabilize the Safety Net and Rebuild Public Health Capacity. Deploy financing solutions that allow safety net facilities to remain open and enable them to stabilize their workforce, invest in outpatient services and access capital for needed investments.
  4. Address Social Drivers to Improve Health for All Americans. Embrace whole-person-health strategies and engage enrollees in new ways to address their health-related social needs.
  5. Help Our Children Reach Their Full Potential. Leverage policy and financing strategies to build partnerships between health care institutions, schools and community organizations to develop life skills, enhance mental health knowledge, provide early intervention and connect youth in need with more intensive services.
  6. Innovate Long-Term Financing and Care Models to Promote Living Longer, Healthier Lives With Dignity. Expand and support the long-term care workforce and improve access to noninstitutional and home-centric care models for older adults and people with disabilities.
  7. Innovate and Advance Care at Home. Modernize legal and regulatory frameworks that govern home care and the reimbursement schemas that pay for it to remove barriers to facilitate innovation.
  8. Accelerate Digital Health. Tightly integrate technology and clinical models to drive improved experience and clinical outcomes, implement strategies to incorporate AI, and design payment policies to stimulate further adoption.
  9. Advance Academic Medicine. Accelerate repositioning strategies: expand ambulatory and community locations, invest in population health and value-based payment strategies, integrate community health into academic programs, extend digital offerings, and become vastly more efficient.
  10.  Deliver Breakthrough Treatments Affordably. Engage with the Food and Drug Omnibus Reform Act (FDORA) to optimize new therapy review and launch.
  11.  Secure Health Data and Put It to Work. Execute a unified, cross-agency, comprehensive national framework to protect the vast amount of digital consumer health information held outside the traditional health care system. Ensure data strategies account for new federal and state data-sharing requirements.

The new report is an update of our ongoing Health Care Imperatives series. In January 2021, Manatt Health described ten health care imperatives essential for improving our health care system and advancing health equity in the decade of the ’20s. Our 2022 update “Navigating Through the Surges”recognized the extraordinary challenge of simultaneously improving the health care system while navigating the exigencies of the pandemic, and highlighted the problems presented by erosion of trust, the epidemic of behavioral health disorders, persistent and widening disparities, and chronic workforce shortages and stresses. We recognized gains made through federal and state action to improve coverage and access and industrywide attention to addressing inequities.

To read the full report, click here.



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