Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Medtronic: From Medical Devices to the Transformation of Healthcare

By Hugo F. Villegas
Medtronic, Latin America

Medtronic is evolving by innovating in new ways and collaborating with new partners around the globe to bring meaningful innovations to market, finding ways to align value among the system’s stakeholders, and increasing access to care around the world.

Medtronic has the point of view that healthcare systems globally are not sustainable as is. New approaches and new forms of innovation are required to face the current challenges and assure that millions of people around the world are not left untreated.

Hugo F. Villegas, president of Medtronic in Latin America shares his views and the Latin American perspective, “We know that universal health should be a must, and Latin America has made huge progress in that realm as more and more countries in our region have implemented health reforms and policies aiming to achieve access to health for their entire populations; countries have even made universal access to healthcare a constitutional right. However, an aging population, the increasing prevalence of chronic diseases, fee-per-procedure payment approaches and delivery systems with misaligned incentives all contribute to the challenges in meeting the universal healthcare needs.”

In Latin America, Medtronic has taken important steps to start the conversation on an approach, known as value-based healthcare that could address these issues. Simply put, value is the idea of delivering better outcomes at a lower cost. We’reactively engaged with hospitals, payers, healthcare authorities and governments, associations, think tanks and the academia in order toexplore how the data and insights that Medtronic’s technologies create can be combined in partnership to help establish aligned value-based healthcare models.

“We currently entered into agreements to implement value-based healthcare projects in Colombia, Chile, Puerto Rico and Brazil. We believe these projects will deliver high quality care for diabetes and cardiac patients,” commented Mr. Hugo Villegas. He added, “Through these agreements, we hope to learn more about what works and share those results as a means of encouraging more private and public actors within the healthcare ecosystem in our region to implement thesenew kinds of models.”

Medtronic technologies and services, combined in partnership with healthcare system stakeholders, can create improvement in models of care and care delivery for specific populations of patients.  When incentives are aligned and payment is linked to outcomes, value creation can be measured and value-based healthcare models are possible.   “We’re exploring alternative payment models that reward value over volume” emphasizes Mr. Villegas. 

Medtronic is known for delivering high clinical value with the company’s innovative technology portfolio. We are now more and more focused on providing economic value throughour services and solutions offerings.  The proposed re-architecture of the healthcare payment and delivery systems seeks to reward patient outcomes by re-shifting the current fee-per-procedure approach to one that puts the patient at the center of care and rewards patient outcomes over volume of procedures.

As the world’s largest medical technology provider, Medtronic has a unique role to play in the move toward aligned, value-based healthcare.We also recognize that no single entity can do this alone. Only through collaboration and partnership can we transform healthcare. “We call this approach Further, Together. ‘Further’ because we will continue to drive progress in innovation and formulate powerful solutions with proven clinical and economic value as the basis of our offerings and ‘Together’ because we will forge new and stronger partnerships to help our customers to achieve their goals, deliver clinical outcomes to the patients and reduce costs” finalized Mr. Villegas.

HUGO F. VILLEGAS has been President of Latin America for Medtronic since January 2015. Hugo is responsible for the operations and business performance of the region with commercial operations in more than 35 countries. From 2013 through 2015, he was President of Latin America for Covidien, which became part of Medtronic in 2015.

Villegas began his 28 year career in sales for Johnson & Johnson, after which he held positions of increasing responsibility, from marketing to general management. He was Country Manager for J&J Peru and J&J Venezuela and subsequently led regional marketing for the company’s Cordis division. Villegas then became Regional Vice President of Johnson & Johnson Latin America and from 2006 until 2013 Villegas was transferred to Madrid, Spain as Regional Vice President of Johnson & Johnson Europe’s Medical Technology.

In 2013 Villegas brought a strong strategic vision and passion for growth and became President of Covidien Latin America. Under his leadership, Covidien’s regional business accomplished double digit growth. After Medtronic’s acquisition of Covidien in early 2015, he became President for the new, expanded operations of both companies across the continent.

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