Partner Kenya Woodruff, the Chair of the Health Care Practice at Katten, had a recent conversation with Nick Uehlecke from the Todd Strategy Group to discuss current trends in the health care industry. The two discussed numerous issues at play. The following are nine highlights, trends they are watching closely:

Private Equity in Health Care: The FTC, DOJ and HHS are paying close attention to the impact of private equity investment in the health care industry. The Biden administration is concerned about the financialization of health care and increasing its investigatory and enforcement efforts in this area.

Health Care Industry Consolidation: The FTC is also investigating the increasing consolidation within the health care industry, focusing on major players such as United Healthcare and Optum.

Non-compete Clauses: Non-compete clauses in health care are under the microscope. While these clauses generally protect legitimate business interests, the Biden administration has expressed a concern they may impede providers in their practice and have a negative impact on patient care..

The Rise of AI in Health Care: Artificial Intelligence (AI) is reshaping health care, but there’s a knowledge gap among policymakers about its implications and potential risks. As AI becomes more embedded in health care, it’s imperative that those regulating it have an to understanding of its impact on both patient care and privacy.

Price Transparency: Price transparency is a hot topic in health care. While it’s seen to empower patients and control costs, there’s a debate over whether the system is ready for such transparency. The challenge lies in making pricing information meaningful and useful to patients.

The Hospital-at-Home Model:The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the adoption of the hospital-at-home model of care. While this model has been successful in some areas, its implementation requires careful management to ensure patient outcomes are improved without increasing costs.

Cybersecurity and Data Privacy: In 2020 alone, more than 10 million health care records were exfiltrated, highlighting the need for robust data protection measures. As there is a greater emphasis on the interconnectivity of health data, protecting patient data will become significantly more challenging.

The Corporate Transparency Act (CTA):The CTA, aimed at rooting out the use of anonymous shell companies for illicit money laundering, has implications for small businesses, including those in the health care sector. It’s critical to understand how such legislation potentially affects health care entities.

Enforcement: There’s pressure for increased enforcement of regulation in health care, particularly in relation to price transparency, interoperability, antitrust, and fraud and abuse.

While the health care landscape is evolving rapidly, it’s important to stay informed about developments in the industry. As companies and health care organizations navigate these trends, Kenya and Nick discussed how the focus should remain on ensuring the best possible patient care while fostering a sustainable and equitable health care system.

Stay tuned for more insights as Katten’s Health Care practice continues to explore these topics as developments arise and trends shift.