The Innovator's Prescription: A Disruptive Solution for Health Care / Edition 1

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A groundbreaking prescription for health care reform—from a legendary

leader in innovation . . .

Our health care system is in critical condition. Each year, fewer Americans can afford it, fewer businesses can provide it, and fewer government programs can promise it for future generations.

We need a cure, and we need it now.

Harvard Business School’s Clayton M. Christensen—whose bestselling The Innovator’s Dilemma revolutionized the business world—presents The Innovator’s Prescription, a comprehensive analysis of the strategies that will improve

health care and make it affordable.

Christensen applies the principles of disruptive innovation to the broken health care system with two pioneers in the field—Dr. Jerome Grossman and Dr. Jason Hwang. Together, they examine a

range of symptoms and offer proven solutions.


  • “Precision medicine” reduces costs and makes good on the promise of personalized care
  • Disruptive business models improve quality, accessibility, and affordability by changing the way hospitals and doctors work
  • Patient networks enable better treatment of chronic diseases
  • Employers can change the roles they play in health care to compete effectively in the era of globalization
  • Insurance and regulatory reforms stimulate disruption in health care
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  • The Innovator's Prescription
    The Innovator's Prescription  

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780071592086
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional Publishing
  • Publication date: 12/4/2008
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 496
  • Sales rank: 115,615
  • Product dimensions: 6.28 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 1.53 (d)

Meet the Author

Clayton M. Christensen is the Robert and Jane Cizik Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School. Christensen is also co-founder of Innosight, a management consultancy; Rose Park Advisors, an investment firm; and Innosight Institute, a non-profit think tank. He is the author or coauthor of five books including the New York Times bestsellers The Innovator's Dilemma, The Innovator's Solution and most recently, Disrupting Class. He also

serves as a leader in the Church of Jesus Christ of

Latter-day Saints.

The late Jerome H. Grossman, M.D., was the Director of the Harvard/Kennedy School Health Care Delivery Policy Program. A nationally recognized health care policy expert and a pioneer in health informatics, his leadership spanned business and health care. He served as CEO of a major medical center, chaired the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, and co-founded four successful companies.

Jason Hwang, M.D., is an internal medicine physician and senior strategist for the Healthcare Practice at Innosight LLC, an innovation and strategy consulting firm. He also co-founded and serves as the Executive Director of Healthcare at Innosight Institute, a non-profit social innovation think tank. Previously, Dr. Hwang was a chief resident and clinical instructor at the University of California, Irvine. He received his M.D. from the University of Michigan and M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 The Role of Disruptive Technology and Business Model Innovation in Making Products and Services Affordable and Accessible 1

Ch. 2 The Technological Enablers of Disruption 37

Ch. 3 Disrupting the Hospital Business Model 73

Ch. 4 Disrupting the Business Model of the Physician's Practice 111

Ch. 5 Disruptive Solutions for the Care of Chronic Disease 149

Ch. 6 Integrating to Make It Happen 183

Ch. 7 Disrupting the Reimbursement System 221

Ch. 8 The Future of the Pharmaceutical Industry 261

Ch. 9 Future Directions for Medical Devices and Diagnostic Equipment 311

Ch. 10 The Future of Medical Education 337

Ch. 11 Regulatory Reform and the Disruption of Health Care 369

Epilogue 419

Index 427

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 11 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 10 of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 29, 2013

    In The Innovator¿s Prescription, Clayton Christensen and his ass

    In The Innovator’s Prescription, Clayton Christensen and his associates address the complex issue of health care reform. Their stated purpose is to “provide a road map for those seeking innovation and reform" (xviii).

    The central thesis of this collaborative effort is that there is a market solution to the rising costs of health care. The proposed solution illustrates that health care reform is a complex undertaking which involves not only lowering the cost of insurance, but also addressing other critical issues such as expensive “one-size-fits-all” business models used by hospitals and physicians. Nine major categories of problems are identified which must be addressed in order to permanently raise the quality of health care while simultaneously providing greater access at lower costs.

    Christensen, a renowned consultant and Harvard scholar, applies his theory of “disruptive innovation” to America’s health care crisis. Disruptive innovation describes the phenomenon that occurs when a product typically only available to the rich is made available to the poor, albeit a product of initial lesser quality.

    An example is the personal computer which initially gave rank and file individuals access to basic word processing and games. Over time, the quality of these products became better and better, eventually displacing the role of ridiculously expensive room-size computers and making high quality personal computers accessible at low costs.

    The authors claim that this same phenomenon can impact America’s health care system. For example, they argue that in some instances costs can be lowered by supplanting expensive physicians with less-expensive staff or technologies which have the same capabilities.

    In 2009, President Obama deplored the rising costs of health care in the United States, saying that “for all of this spending, more of our citizens are uninsured, the quality of our care is often lower, and we aren’t any healthier.”

    Yet time after time in The Innovator’s Prescription, Christensen, Grossman, and Hwang demonstrate how disruptive innovation can create a market solution to the health care crisis. They carefully dissect each known problem and demonstrate exactly how more citizens can obtain high-quality, low-cost health insurance designed to improve health.

    Christensen and his associates do a masterful job at objectively presenting a complex issue in a reasonably succinct and impressively organized fashion. At the same time, they are likely to incite passion in many readers. Their belief in disruptive innovation is likely to anger physicians who are hesitant to accept less expensive technologies and business models. Their claim that a long-term solution is not possible without requiring everybody to purchase insurance—something akin to the “individual mandate” of national health care reform—is also likely to frustrate many conservatives. Nonetheless, the analysis is unmistakably nonpartisan and it is easy to see that the authors are more concerned with finding a solution than placating their audience.

    While the book does not make for light reading, it will be a valuable addition to the library of anyone interested in truly understanding what is wrong with our health care system. The Innovator’s Prescription provides an impressively objective analysis of what is wrong with America’s health care system and what is necessary to create a long-term solution.

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  • Posted October 28, 2011

    Creating a Sustainable Business Model for Our Healthcare System

    A must read for professionals working within our healthcare system as well as for those whom shape public policy and determine how provider organizations are paid for their services. A thought provoking read on using innovation models to help transform our healthcare system from its current state of chaos and financial decline to a sustainable business model which is based on value, efficiency while remaining patient focused. Also provides insights as to the root causes of the current nash equalibrium our healthcare system seems to be stuck in and how disruptive innovation can help to change the current status quo.

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  • Posted August 29, 2009

    Road Map to Improvements in US Health Care Delivery

    This is an excellent book that every legislator and chief executive must read and absorb. In a third of the pages it takes the US Congress to promote an ineffective and expensive plan that merely mimicks European-style single-payer health care, Christensen, Grossman and Hwang map out well-argued, well-documented, well-reasoned innovations to the health care system, its delivery mechanism, and its funding. Based in market-driven solutions, the concepts presented in this book free those who participate in this area of our economy (that is, ALL of us) to allow health care to be treated as an economic sector, and not merely a social service. A MUST READ for legislators, practitioners and patients.

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  • Posted May 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    More insight from one of today's original business thinkers

    Most business books are actually HBR articles inflated by editors to 250-pages to meet an unwritten weight requirement. Dr. Christensen is one of the few thinkers who actually merit the book-length format and hold an experienced entrepreneur's attention throughout. This work is insightful and entertaining, while providing helpful tools and the continued expansion of the analytical framework Christensen has been developing over the past two decades. I am selective in terms of the business-oriented books I choose to finish and I wait for each addition to the Clay Christensen library. This book is well worth reading and owning, even if healthcare is not your target market.

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  • Posted March 17, 2009

    excellent book for anyone in the health care profession wanting change.

    very comprehensive book outlining how health care can change how it conducts its business. business principals are related to health care industry so those with no business background can relate and understand whats being presented. the fact that the book is co authored by 2 md'd gives validity to the claims presented. the only critique is that scholars within the nursing field should have been consulted and their perspective documented seeing how the nursing role will be greatly impacted by the changes that are cited.

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