Creating Resilience

Healthcare's Future Is Omnichannel

What Healthcare can learn from Retail

10 Minute Read

physician consults with patient over the internet

couple consults with their doctor on video conference

Looking for a PDF of this content?

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted many aspects of daily life, including how we currently receive healthcare and how it will be consumed in the future. In 2020 alone, U.S. hospitals will have lost a projected $323.1 billion plus in revenue,1 with contributing factors brought on by deferment or cancellation of elective surgeries and discharges of non-COVID patients.

A graph showing hospital losses compared to CARES Act and PPP Provider Relief Fund

In addition to the loss in revenue, technological acceleration and adoption enabled health systems to shift to virtual work-from-home solutions for non-clinical staff and widely adopted telehealth for care delivery. Healthcare is at a tipping point:

Can health systems adapt and balance their physical and virtual environments in order to succeed in this evolving landscape?

Over the last 10 or more years, the retail industry has been severely disrupted by technology advancements and the age of e-commerce, forcing a shift to omnichannel. This multichannel, consumer-led approach has led to a balance between brick-and-mortar stores and e-commerce, determining which locations to preserve and enhance and where to locate new stores, thereby creating a tailored, flexible experience leveraging online and mobile technologies.

There exists a relevant alignment theory across property types such that the healthcare industry can learn a great deal from retail’s recent and rapid transformation.
John MorrisAmericas Industrial & Logistics and Retail Leader, CBRE

An evaluation of the retail industry offers a glimpse into how health systems can transform their digital and physical delivery model, thereby enabling them to evolve by employing the following:

Icons describing flexible delivery, data analytics, and consistent experience

Healthcare and technology have blended to create optimum outcomes across healthcare’s continuum of care. However, technological advances have compounded acceleration over the last 20 years and hospitals have had the nearly impossible task of keeping up. Today, the pandemic is driving rapid adoption of virtual healthcare solutions, and hospitals are being forced to adopt new models and technology on a permanent basis. This is not only a daunting task for an asset-heavy business, but also represents a wealth of untapped opportunity.

Related Insights

  • Insights & Research

    Future of Work


    How and where business gets done has been fundamentally altered. Our latest data, insights and solutions help you understand, anticipate and influence the future of work.