From Documentation to Action: Q&A with Joe Rubinsztain, CEO of ChronWell

A conversation with the leader of digital healthcare company ChronWell on the future of the industry and recent changes in the field of Care Management

Demand for remote healthcare has boomed in response to the pandemic. Health systems worldwide are racing to adopt virtualized treatment approaches that reduce the need for in-person meetings between patients and providers. Joe Rubinsztain,CEO and Co-Founder of ChronWell, explains the company’s unique capabilities to address the recent shift and how it’s and a different way to think about patient care.


Q: What trends are you seeing in the industry?


The biggest trend right now comes with the recent social shifts amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re starting to get used to social distancing, so reaching out and caring for patients is more important than ever. Telehealth is safe and convenient, but short on time and human contact. I think we need new ways to create meaningful connections with patients without physical presence. Humanizing healthcare seems to be a key point in some of the upcoming political debates. Another important trend is remote vital signs monitoring (RPM). By combining both trends we can drive better conversations with patients and perhaps create incentives through health coaching and gamification. I would not be surprised if we see the rise of the health coach as a key player.


Q: How has COVID-19 specifically impacted the industry?


The pandemic has profoundly impacted the healthcare industry, mainly with the pivotal shift to telehealth and remote practicing. A lot of patients who used to see their doctors on a regular basis are no longer connecting with them, which leads to the abandonment of certain chronic conditions. On the industry side, clinicians are finding telehealth easier and more effective than they previously thought. Additionally, there have been a lot of closures for elective procedures which are hurting those industries and doctors from a financial perspective. This shift increases the demand for a new revenue line, and remote care management programs like Chronic Care Management (CCM) will replace some of this lost opportunity.


Q Do you have any predictions for the future of telehealth/remote options? Will they be as prevalent a year or even five years from now?


Telehealth and remote options in healthcare are here to stay. Five years from now providers will reserve time in their schedule (maybe 1 day a week) for telehealth, and certain non-critical interactions like follow-up visits and coaching will only be offered remotely. Many remote care activities will be automated, and technology will have a bigger role in health monitoring, risk stratification, care support and population management.  Hopefully the government will maintain higher reimbursement for telehealth and remote care based on the proven savings achieved during the COVID-19 pandemic. At ChronWell, we are lucky to be in the right place at the right time.


Q: What differentiates ChronWell from other solutions? What do you expect for the company’s future?


ChronWell’s program was already focused on remote care for specialists prior to this major shift, so we gained tremendous momentum. Our team has deep understanding of medical specialties, practice workflow and technology. This combination of skills and experience matches the challenge of creating scalable high-quality clinical extension services to improve specialty care. It’s unlikely a larger company could quickly pivot to successfully serve a client. CCM and RPM for Medicare Beneficiaries is our first program, but we anticipate fast growth as Medicare and private payers continue expanding and adopting new programs. Many providers are adopting bundled payments, new forms of capitation and value-based initiatives, so we anticipate partnering with practices to build new technology-enabled clinical service lines and population health programs to support their growth and the shift to a new healthcare model.

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