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Health IT can't evolve to handle toughest insurance industry challenges, execs say

Business intelligence, analytics "least mature" tech in insurance

Insurance executives don't think that health information technology analytics can evolve to help their companies address their top challenges of regulatory compliance, value-based reimbursement and patient-centered care, according to a recent survey from consulting company Genpact.

Out of the more than 900 senior-level execs surveyed, 69 percent said business intelligence and analytics are the least mature technical aspect of the insurance industry and the least likely to evolve into a useful tool.

On the other hand, almost all of the C-suite execs said claims processes and adjudication are the most mature components of the industry and most prepared to meet the challenges. They may feel that way because insurers have generally focused their attention on using analytics to improve claims processing as well as customer service and satisfaction, the survey noted.

When it came to the challenges they face, 65 percent of the insurance execs said ensuring their companies are compliant with regulations was the top obstacle, while 58 percent cited increasing customer satisfaction and 51 percent said reducing costs.

"While evolving regulations continue to challenge healthcare organizations, operational efficiencies and consumer satisfaction are now an important focus," Jim Mapes, senior vice president and business leader, Healthcare, Genpact, said in a statement. "The industry sees the greatest value in a pragmatic approach that uses technology judiciously and combines it with shared organizational models to address these challenges." 

One way some insurers are handling their health IT issues is to invest in more advanced tech startup companies. The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, along with an investment house, established BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners, which has become the third most active digital health investor since 2010, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

In addition, public and private insurance exchanges are starting to invest in decision support software, which analyzes how a consumer answers demographic and health questions to help them find the insurance plan that best fits their needs. 

To learn more:
- read the Genpact statement and survey

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