Health Care Partnership Must Share Key Learnings with Competitors, Experts Say

Article ID: 688896

Released: 2-Feb-2018 12:05 PM EST

Source Newsroom: Northwestern University

Expert Pitch
  • Credit: Northwestern University

    Craig Garthwaite

  • Credit: Northwestern University

    Harry Kraemer

  • Credit: Northwestern University

    Megan McHugh

Newswise — To disrupt the current health care system, the recently announced partnership of Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JP Morgan Chase must share best practices throughout the industry and improve environments for all employees, according to experts from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and Feinberg School of Medicine.

Craig Garthwaite is an associate professor of strategy and the director of the Health Enterprise Management Program at Kellogg. His recent work focuses on the private sector effects of the Affordable Care Act. He also tweets regularly on the topic. Garthwaite can be reached at c-garthwaite@kellogg.northwestern.edu or by contacting Abby Daniel at 312-515-1146or abbydanielLLC@gmail.com.

Quote from Professor Garthwaite
“To create disruptive change in the industry, the new venture from Amazon/Berkshire Hathaway/JP Morgan Chase will have to share best practices and key learnings with competitors. Additionally, while Amazon has 500,000 workers, they are all spread out, which will limit what the new venture can do from scale and size.”

Harry Kraemer is a clinical professor of strategy at Kellogg. He is the former CEO of Baxter and the author of best-selling leadership books “From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership” and “Becoming The Best: Build a World-Class Organization Through Values-Based Leadership.” Kraemer can be reached by contacting Molly Lynch at 773-505-9719 or molly@lynchgrouponline.com.

Quote from Professor Kraemer
"The three companies certainly have the will and good intentions. However, even with their combined brainpower and resources, the new partnership will find it difficult to cure the health care ills in the United States. While facing large challenges, their desire to disrupt this system makes sense, if anything, for cost savings for their employees, and other large employers could potentially duplicate this."

Megan McHugh is an assistant professor in the Center for Healthcare Studies and director of the program in health care policy and implementation at Feinberg. McHugh, who is based in Washington, D.C., has written extensively on federal policy making and health care reform and has testified before Congress. She can be reached at megan-mchugh@northwestern.edu or 703-867-3629.

Quote from Professor McHugh
“The joint statement said that the independent health care company would focus on technology to provide simplified, high-quality health care for their employees and their families at a reasonable cost. But to lower health spending, the new company should also focus on strategies to keep employees and their families healthy, which means improving the environments in which they live and work. The new company should consider investing in community health interventions that keep people healthy and eliminating work policies that are detrimental to employee health, such as 12-hour shifts, rotating schedules.”

Joel Shalowitz is a professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. He teaches courses on the U.S. health care system for graduate and medical students. Shalowitz can be reached at j-shalowitz@northwestern.edu.

Quote from Professor Shalowitz
“The joint venture will have little impact if limited to their own employees. Despite Amazon’s logistics expertise, JP Morgan’s financial savvy and Berkshire’s insurance experience, the missing piece is an efficient and effective delivery system. At the end of the day, someone needs to deliver the care. If the companies leverage their strengths to offering their services across the country to other businesses, then we may see some benefits.”


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