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The Path to Digital Business Transformation in Healthcare

Digital business transformation in healthcare usually starts with a CIO being tasked with developing a business case for digital care delivery (DCD). As a result, healthcare CIOs have a very important role to play in digital business transformation and can help healthcare delivery organizations identify dependencies and implement relevant changes to the business strategy.

To successfully plan and execute a digital business strategy, the healthcare CIO must ensure that the path to digital transformation is clearly articulated and understood by all stakeholders.

The path to digital healthcare

There are two paths to digital business in healthcare: the vertical and the horizontal. The vertical path involves the digitalization of the business of healthcare management, where the CIO deals with the administrative and financial aspects of care (for example, accounting and arranging for care) and supply chain.

The horizontal path encompasses the digitalization of clinical capabilities. It lies at the heart of an organization’s value proposition, and forms the basis of the business model. Digital business occurs when these two paths come together to create value at the intersection of e-commerce and DCD.

DCD — the use of technologies to promote, maintain and restore the health of an individual through high-quality, anywhere-anytime care — represents the future state in healthcare. CIOs need to illuminate its value because providing care is at the core of a healthcare organization’s business model and is what patients, citizens and consumers receive. But first, CIOs must ensure that the digital strategy includes the successful transformation of business models and clinical operations.

Relationship between business strategy and business and operating models

There’s a reciprocal relationship between a healthcare organization’s business strategy and its business model, and changes to one affect the other. And this will usually also lead to changes in the operating model.

Gartner believes that CIOs who master and leverage business capability models can contribute significantly to business model innovation, business strategy development and enterprise operating model improvement. CIOs must assess and influence the full scope and effect of new technologies and disruptive technology change across all three disciplines and their dependencies.

To successfully align the three views, CIOs should help their healthcare delivery organizations bring the digital and business worlds together.

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