In July 2019, we gathered at The Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne with a hand-selected group of the HealthXL community to discuss why the rest of the world should be looking at Australia for digital health.
- Partnerships in Implementation: Reaching scale and a positive financial return is almost impossible to do solo. Just like life partners, work partners come in all shapes and sizes and have strengths and weaknesses. Partnering with a range of interdisciplinary players (patients, clinical, industry, community) is likely to be crucial for the success of your company/product(s).
- The Actionable Health Information Challenge: With the explosion of health data collected, it is not always clear whether it can be turned into actionable insights. This round table will explore how to use health data better to support consumers improve their health and well-being by defining what is actionable and prioritise it into “bites” for consumers and clinicians to act on.
Partnerships in Implementation
Group lead: Phoebe McLeod, Head of Legal and Licensing (digital health) at MCRI
The session began by identifying the three key challenges around building effective partnerships in Digital Health, which were then discussed and explored by all members at the roundtable.
Attendees in the group:
- Adam Wardell, Head of Innovation, Strategy & BD&L, Novartis
- Karen Kinmont, Chief Information Officer, Epworth Healthcare
- Peter Kambouris, Director - BD&C Health And Biosecurity, CSIRO
- Zachary Tan, Chief Strategy Officer, CancerAid
- Annette Schmiede, Executive Leader Bupa Health Foundation, Bupa Australia
Key takeaways from the discussion are:
- There is no blueprint/recipe for a successful partnership
- Partnering early allows for co-development and co-creation which can result in long term commitment to the project
- Mutually beneficial mandates and common goals are key to successful partnerships
- Approaches to partnership are individual and nuanced. You need to be able to speak the same ‘language’ as the person you’re trying to partner with and understand what the key drivers/strategic goals are within their company.
- Partnerships take a lot of time and effort – This needs to be sustainable and continuous in order to be successful.
- Digital health is different to other sectors and requires a new type of ‘model’ for partnerships, rather than just ‘business as usual’
1. Forming the partnership
When approaching partnerships, the offer must be individual and nuanced. It is important to be able to speak the same ‘language’ as the person you’re trying to partner with. Equally as important is being able to understand the key drivers and strategic goals of the company. Partnerships in digital health differ to that of other sectors as they require a new type of ‘partnership model’, rather than simply ‘business as usual’.
2. Sustainable/continual partnerships
In order to build sustainable, long term partnerships that continue to deliver, the parties involved in the partnership need to have common goals. These partnerships require a lot of time and effort to ensure their sustainability and continuity. Additionally, the partnership needs to offer into mutually beneficial outcomes. Partnering early offers a unique advantage as both partners are able to co-develop and co-create. This can result in long-term, committed and successful partnerships.
3. How do you socialize an idea across a big organisation? Is the answer an internal champion?
From the formative stages of a partnership to building and sustaining continual partnerships, there are many challenges that arise. This includes working with both large and small partners and understanding their unique needs. Ultimately, there is no right one way to partner – However, both entities need to be aware of potential partnership challenges and work collaboratively to mitigate these.
“The event highlighted the diverse and collaborative group of professionals tackling digital health innovation and commercialisation in Australia. In particular, there was strong representation from private health insurers and big pharma – 2 big players needed to make digital health in Australia reach its full potential.”
- Phoebe McLeod, MCRI
The Actionable Health Information Challenge
Group lead: Alex Brassert, Health System Policy & Development Manager, BUPA
The session began with Group lead, Alex Brassert, providing background on Bupa’s current initiatives and pilots, and outlining the topics of discussion, which were then discussed and explored by all members at the roundtable.
Attendees in the group:
- Jonny Lo, Program Manager, ANDHealth
- Simone Darling, Business Development Officer - Digital Health, MCRI
- Nick Park, Director, Bupa Digital, Bupa Australia
- Louis Island, Director & Co-Founder, My Life Health Services
- George Charalambous, Executive Director, Curve Tomorrow
- Sharon Goldfeld, Paediatrician & Deputy Director, MCRI
- Mohan Karunanithi, Group Leader – Health Services, CSIRO
Key takeaways from the discussion are:
- Work backwards from the action or outcome you want to drive, then decide on the insights you will need and then the data to collect.
- Value and data exchange should be easy, timely, social and attractive as defined in the EAST Four simple ways to apply behavioural insights.
- · Make it measurable to objectively look at the data
In line with the topic of discussion, definitions on actionable insights were provided by BUPA:
- Insights are generated by analysing information and drawing conclusions. Both data and information set the stage for the discovery or insights that can then influence decisions and drive change
- Information is prepared data that has been processed, aggregated and organised into a more human-friendly format that provides more context
- Data is raw and unprocessed facts that are usually in the form of numbers and text. Quantitative or qualitative.
1. Consumer Data Collection
Roundtable participants identified several challenges of data collection and consumers’ sharing of data. These challenges include privacy - the more private the data being collected from consumers, the less likely they are willing to share it. Timing of data collection, including before, during and after the point of care, was felt to be particularly important. The type of data collected was also considered a key factor, with the example of limited utility of claims data. Providing early and observable benefits to consumers with data collection was also considered to be important by roundtable participants. The group also shared their guidance on what not to do, like sending long questionnaires or not being transparent about the benefits of data sharing to the consumer.
2. User Centric Design and Empathy
The group considered design thinking and end-user empathy to be beneficial for delivering actionable insights. Creating personas, via passive and active (e.g. asking questions) activities, was cited as possible ways to achieve this and examples of aged care and mood, along with dental visits and fear were provided by the roundtable participants. But the validation of assumptions was felt to be critical. Some participants highlighted that most consumers/ patients have altruistic motives (e.g. to live or longer, better quality of life, or spending more time with grandkids) for engaging in the health system. Consequently, shifting from a reactive to a proactive model of healthcare is inherently challenging. Awarding prizes for engagement was given as an example of incentives that work on some but not all people and that can wear off quickly.
The benefits of co-design and delivering different insights to different users was discussed. The example of HeadCheck, co-designed by MCRI and the Australian Football League whilst providing different insights to parents and local football clubs, was provided. Participants agreed that insights must factor value to nuisance and consider the desired end outcome when determining the data to collect.
“My favourite part of the session was how the discussion around empathy and co-design led to a throw away idea from one of the participants only to find out someone else had been working on a similar prototype. It is so exciting to see how bringing everyone together around a concept can make these connections possible and bring about potential future collaborations.”
- Alex Brassert, Bupa