Richard S. Isaacs, MD, discusses ‘harvesting’ learnings from COVID-19 to improve patient care in Becker’s podcast

In a recent interview on the Becker’s Healthcare Podcast, Richard S. Isaacs, MD, FACS, CEO and executive director of The Permanente Medical Group and president and CEO of the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group, shared insights on how COVID-19 has impacted the future of virtual care and spoke to disruptive technology trends in health care.

Headshot of Richard Isaacs, MD
Richard S. Isaacs, MD, FACS

While surveying the health care landscape, Dr. Isaacs noted that the pandemic has prompted profound and widespread change, particularly when it comes to innovation and technology best practices.

“We’re focused on harvesting as many learnings as we can from the early parts of the pandemic to identify where the virtual visits — either video, chat, [or] secure messaging — provide value and eliminate redundancy,” he said.

Dr. Isaacs added that Kaiser Permanente is building a “digital front door” that will allow patients to navigate the system more easily and find care that best suits their needs, whether in the form of a virtual visit or face-to-face interaction.

Dr. Isaacs, who also serves as co-CEO of The Permanente Federation, emphasized that these developments are part of an overall shift toward consumerism in U.S. health care, where patients can receive care whenever and wherever they need it.

“When you have that level of care without delay, I think that it drives tremendous quality,” he said.

Note: To listen to the entire podcast, visit the Becker’s Hospital Review website.