Where do you see San Diego’s health care sector headed in 2017?
Along with the trend nationally, I see a continued shift in San Diego to treating patients not in hospitals, but in other locations that provide the right level of care in the right place at the right time. Patients will benefit by getting the care they need in a setting that’s more convenient for them, with easier access to appointments and with an integrated approach to care among all of their care providers. We need to be where patients need us when they need us.
I also see a growing emphasis not just on prolonging a patient’s life — which medicine is good at doing — but improving the quality of that life, as well. End-of-life care should be what the patient wants it to be, where they want it to be.
Scientific advances will continue to transform medicine and the delivery of health care through this year and years to come. There will be more advances in individualized medicine that tailors treatment to patients based on genomics, which will continue to affect everything from which drugs are right for each patient to understanding the best way to treat different cancers. At the same time, there will be advances in helping whole populations of patients as health care’s ability to use data changes the research landscape and helps translate findings to the patient bedside faster. Other technological advances will help perform seeming miracles, like detecting potential heart attacks before they happen.