By Rajaie Batniji, Co-founder and Chief Health Officer
Since founding Collective Health, our mission has been clear and consistent: we want to make it effortless for organizations and their people to understand, navigate, and pay for healthcare. It is through this effortlessness that we can improve the member experience, lower the cost of care, and improve health outcomes.
Being a technology company focused on improving healthcare means being fiercely committed to evolving our approach to rapidly develop the infrastructure and strategies to better manage population health and the cost of care. For decades now, data silos in employer healthcare have made it impossibly complicated for patients to navigate healthcare and for employers to make informed decisions about their health plans.
We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished over the last five years, and we’re investing even deeper in our analytics and research programs to ensure we’re setting the bar as high as possible. This is why I’m so excited to welcome Dr. Sanjay Basu as our new Director of Research and Analytics. He will play an essential role in allowing Collective Health and our employer customers to better manage population health and cost of care, starting with the more than 200,000 members we serve across the U.S.
Sanjay and his team will deepen our evaluation of the interaction between medical costs and the myriad of programs available—from onsite clinics to targeted digital health disease management programs—to help employers quickly assess what’s working, what isn’t, and for us to direct members to the right care. He will also shape our efforts to deliver personalized recommendations to members informed by his unparalleled experience in developing predictive models based on healthcare claims and supporting data. We’ve made huge strides over the last several years, greatly improving employees’ engagement in their health benefits. As a result, we kept medical trend at more than 5% below the industry average for our renewal clients. But it’s imperative that we continue to rigorously measure our results, iterate on our methodology, and be honest and humble in assessing our progress.
Sanjay joins Collective Health from Stanford, where he spent the last few years as Assistant Professor of Medicine and Health Policy. He is an exceptionally talented and creative leader who combines unparalleled technical skills with deep domain experience. Notably, he has written over 200 influential research publications and spent the past couple years leading efforts to build machine learning systems on claims data—important work that complements his efforts in creating data-driven personalized treatment plans and intervention assessment. He has also published leading work on the evaluation of care management programs and payment strategies, all essential to Collective Health and our commitment to improving healthcare for our customers and members.
As both Sanjay and I have seen in our roles as researchers and physicians, America is rich with medicine and technologies aimed at treating diseases and helping people with chronic conditions live normal lives. However, much of the innovation happening in areas like therapeutics and pharmaceuticals has not been applied to some of the most fundamental parts of our system—like how patients navigate and pay for their care. This is often where patients get lost and where they feel the most vulnerable.
A big part of what brought Sanjay here was the opportunity to systematically tackle the deepest rooted issues plaguing healthcare and perpetuating the status quo. In his own words: “Collective Health has improved the healthcare experience by aligning patient and employer incentives and is focused on reducing or eliminating the persistent perversities that have plagued my own patients for years—from having to find a fax machine to get authorization to prescribe a life-saving treatment; to seeing a patient in the emergency room after their refill for essential insulin was rejected; to having patients who avoided getting help for their illness until it was too late because they were afraid of the bill.”
We’re excited to have Sanjay on our team as we continue building out one of the most rigorous, cutting-edge analytics and research functions across the healthcare and tech industries. And we’re excited to continue working with some of the most forward-thinking employers in the country to create a better, more transparent healthcare system that puts the patient first.