My colleague Ann Mond Johnson and I attended and participated in the 7th Annual Health 2.0 event in Santa Clara, California this week. Health 2.0 has grown from a small gathering in San Francisco to now over 2,000 attendees, which cover the gamut – entrepreneurs, start ups, VCs, vendors and carriers. The format is a combination of keynote speakers, interviews with different industry types and rapid demos by different companies, and the focus is to create buzz around the convergence of consumer-facing and professional-oriented healthcare companies and technologies. It was a blast.
I presented twice, introducing the Intuit Benefits Marketplace that is powered by ConnectedHealth. The feedback we received (even on Twitter!) about our integrated payroll/marketplace solution was terrific.
Beyond our sessions, I want to share some impressions and tidbits I picked up during the conference:
1. Many of the presentations reminded me of how important it is for our industry to continue to innovate – as features that were only recently fresh and new are now requirements in the market. Yet the goal for our business stays the same: guide and engage consumers as they maximize their benefit dollars.
2. The exhibit hall was filled with companies offering new types of products or retrofitted products for the new world, ranging from healthcare apps that are packaged and provided through carriers such as Cigna to a mobile video with a doctor demonstrating advances in telemedicine. There were many familiar names (Fujitsu, Verizon) who have seen a huge opportunity in healthcare and are leveraging their experiences in this new world.
3. Gavin Newsome (former mayor of San Francisco and current Lieutenant Governor of California) reminded us of how dramatic the change has been in just the last 10 years. As he put it: There was no Facebook, Twitter was a sound birds made, cloud was something in the sky and Skype was a typo.
Now that the panic around October 1 is beginning to a settle a bit, it is clearer where the market is headed: ACA combined with enabling technology has stimulated a huge transformation in how health and benefits are purchased and delivered. And our industry has a great opportunity to create new and different experiences for consumers.