Richard Worzel - Futurist - Speaker - Consultant
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Keynote & Workshop Topics
Keynote & Workshop Topics
Health Care

The Future of Nursing: Choosing the Tomorrow We Want

Surprisingly to some, nurses may be the pivotal players in helping to turn health care away from looming disaster, and towards a more effective and more affordable future. In this overview of the possible and probable futures of health care, practical visionary and futurist Richard Worzel provides an overview of how the future of health care is likely to unfold – and how nurses can change it for the better. Among the subjects Richard covers are:

• The three forces that are driving health care off a cliff;

• Why nurses may be the best positioned group in society to change perceptions and alter the future of health care;

• The ways in which nurses can shift the way things are done for the better – and how these actions will improve the career prospects and working conditions of nurses in the process;

• How nurses can improve the health of the general public and raise their profile at the same time; and

• Futurist tools that nursing organizations can use to map out where we want to go, and develop plans on how to get there.

You’ll walk away with a fresh perspective and a new hope about the future of health care, and a clear sense of what can – and should be done.

The Unsettled Healthcare Supply Chain: An Opportunity Waiting to Happen

‘Amateurs talk about tactics, but professionals study logistics.’

- Gen. Robert H. Barrow, USMC (Commandant of the Marine Corps), 1980

The health care supply chain is a critical, pivotal issue in the future of health care in America, yet exhibits the fragmentation and flux characteristic of a market undergoing widespread change. Futurist Richard Worzel is a business visionary with a broad view of why change is happening, and what can be done to capitalize on it. In this presentation, he provides an overview of what’s ahead for healthcare, why the supply chain is in moderate disarray, and where the opportunities will lie, including:

Technology – Computing power and rapidly increasing sophistication in evolutionary algorithms and Big Data Analytic techniques are developing far faster than they are being applied in health care generally, and supply chains specifically. The increasing gaps that emerge each represent opportunities for those with the ability to plan incisively, act decisively, develop long-term relationships up and downstream, and possess the staying power to make the necessary capital investments.

Collaboration – Working up and down the supply chain, integrating with suppliers upstream, and clients and their customers downstream, is a way of moving the entire supply chain into the future, making it more responsive, flexible, and enhancing the ability to respond faster and more constructively than competitors.

• Wrangling the billing process – As difficult as the science involved in medical research is, the increasingly complex and arcane sets of rules affecting billing, invoicing, and repayment are as difficult to handle. Managing these rules directly, and assisting clients and end customers in doing so, therefore becomes a competitive advantage.

• Combining common sense and Big Data – There is a natural tendency for players in the supply chain to lean towards the behaviors they are most comfortable with, whether it’s on the technology side, the human management side, or institutional procedures. Yet, the real winners will be those who can do it all by digging into the idiosyncrasies of widely varying institutional rules, applying common sense to analyzing and streamlining processes and procedures, and applying emerging IT solutions in a carefully thought-out manner.

In this presentation, Richard will provide a roadmap to the future of health care, along with the three major forces that are driving change within it, then focus in on the specifics of the healthcare supply chain, and help participants identify the greatest opportunities ahead.



An Eye on Tomorrow: What the Future Holds for Optometry

Society in general, and health care in particular, are on the verge of dramatic changes that will have significant implications for optometry businesses, and optometrists.

Richard Worzel is a business visionary, and today’s leading futurist. In this broad-based presentation, he deals with some of the critical issues that will affect the business of optometry, including:

• Demographic shifts, as the baby boomers move towards retirement and start experiencing the consequences of advanced aging. This will have consequences for government finances, and put increasing pressure on health care providers. It will also imply steadily increasing demand for help for eye care professionals. Meanwhile, there will also be a changing of the guard in business, as boomers gradually move out of top executive positions, and are replaced by younger generations with different capabilities, values, and orientations. Managed badly, this can lead to internal culture clashes. Managed well, it can lead to cultural synergies.

• Technology – All of the technological advances we’ve seen in the past, remarkable though they have been, are merely table-setters for the advances we will see in future. For instance, it’s been estimated that over the next 10 years, computers will become 1,000 times more powerful. As our ability to use this power becomes more sophisticated, we will be able to do things that would, today, seem like magic. This is going to change the workplace, social interactions, politics, and, most notably, health care. In the field of eye care, it may lead to radically new solutions for dealing with degrading eyesight.

• The global economy – From the outsourcing of diagnostics and technical reports to places like India, to the invasion of the domestic marketplace by foreign suppliers, the global economy has radically reshaped business at home and around the world. We’re not done with these changes, and the effects will be widespread, and felt in everything from food prices and general inflation, to new competitors appearing overnight to fight for marketshare in previously well-established markets.

• Financial markets – As the events in America in 2008 and Europe over the past several years have shown, developments in the financial markets can affect consumer attitudes and spending in markets that seem to be completely unrelated. And the potential exists for even greater upheavals over the next 10 years and beyond. This is clearly a situation where being forewarned means being forearmed.

Innovation and Leadership: Solutions for the Troubled Future of Health Care in America

With the aging of America, the demands for health care are going to rise almost exponentially, giving rise to difficulties – and opportunities – that are without precedent. At the same time, the faster-than-exponential changes in technologies, techniques, and treatments will mean that health care professionals will be able to do things we couldn’t even think of doing in the past.

Richard Worzel is a strategic planner, and one of today’s leading futurists. In this presentation, he identifies some of the issues ahead for the health care field, then turns to the issue of innovation, and how it can both be applied to the field, and how an organization’s dedication to innovation can improve its leadership, and vice-versa. Among the topics discussed will be:

• The financial, economic, and political consequences of the aging of the population, and how they will affect health care professionals.

• How the pace of technological change is accelerating, how it will affect management of health care, and how different professions within health care will be affected by it.

• Why the application of computer intelligences to health care issues will lead to new kinds of tools and solutions.

• Why most organizations pledge allegiance to innovation, but really don’t like it, and avoid practicing it, and what your organization can do to change that.

• Why innovation and leadership are two complementary virtues that reinforce and support each other, and how to institutionalize them in your organization.

Along with this overview of tomorrow’s landscape, Richard will provide conferees with an electronic handbook titled ‘Leadership and Innovation: Techniques to Lead Creativity’.



Making I.T. Happen: Using Information Technology as the Force Multiplier in Health Care

The government of Ontario projects that, left unchanged, about 70% of program spending will be devoted to health care by the early years of the 2020’s decade, leaving only 30% for all other government responsibilities. This is clearly unsustainable, so a revolution in health care is a must. Richard Worzel, a strategic planner and Canada’s leading futurist, surveys the landscape of healthcare’s future, and I.T.’s place in it to:

• Identify the components of tomorrow’s health care system;

• Outline the ways in which the different participants will work together in an integrated approach to health care;

• Describe the end result of a global health care mechanism that will supply the greatest health care tool humanity may ever have; and

• Illustrate the possibilities open to individual professionals working in IT that can lead us to these future breakthroughs.

Richard will bring the big picture down to the individual level, and talk about how the distant future can be incorporated in the day-to-day thinking and operations of everyone involved. You’ll walk away with a clearer idea of where we are headed, how we will get there, and what you can do to make it happen.

How Risk Management Affects Health Care: Managing Risk in an Uncertain World

The events of the past 24 months have tested the abilities of risk managers to exercise strategic foresight, and adequately prepare for a world where greater uncertainties will be the norm. How, then, can risk managers prepare for what’s to come, especially in a fast-changing field like health care? Richard Worzel is a Chartered Financial Analyst, a strategic planner, and one of today’s leading futurists. In this presentation, he will explore some of the critical challenges ahead, and offer suggestions on how to cope. In particular, he will deal with:

• A futurist’s view of risk management is much broader than that of the traditional risk management literature, because it includes a broader range of potential risks. Accordingly, what are the three principal kinds of risks, and how do organizations classically respond to them? (Hint: not as well as they should.)

• What’s ahead for the Canadian, American, and world economies? What are the outlooks for inflation and renewed recession? And what nasty surprises could yet be lurking, buried in the urgent, but less important details of the recent panic?

• How is demographics changing society, health care, and government funding? What should hospitals prepare for? And what are the gradually developing risks that are largely being overlooked?

• Technology offers risks both positive and negative, yet risk managers often overlook the importance of positive risks. And technology will wreak twice as many changes on organizations and society over the next 10 years than over the past 10. Such changes include better understanding of the genome, nutrition, the rapid change in the pharmaceutical industry, and the rising expectations of patients and their families.

In addition to exploring these topics, Richard also supplies conferees, free of charge, an electronic copy of the handbook he developed for his consulting clients, Risk Management and Scenario Planning: How to Avoid Problems and Spot Opportunities. Risk managers will walk away both with a better understanding of what they are facing, and with new tools for improving future results.

Strange Days: The Future of Health Care & Pharmaceuticals

Ever since the Human Genome Project showed the value of using computers in medical research, research is starting to move at in silico speeds instead of in vitro speeds. Richard Worzel, best-selling author and Canada’s leading futurist, surveys the health care landscape of the next 25 years, and highlights:

• How health care will change, and why it must;

• How a global medical warning system will gather instant-by-instant reports on the health status of close to 5 billion people, and what the implications for future research and data mining;

• The new kinds of research tools that must be used to deal with data overload that is rising by orders of magnitude every five years or so;

• How drug research will change because of these new tools, and why such tools will force a complete change in the way pharmaceuticals are marketed.

• How the power of the Internet is re-shaping the pharma industry into a demand-pull model instead of a supply-push model.

• What demographics means to drug sales and marketing, and why it will require a new approach to provincial formularies.

Richard compares the advances of the next 25 years with the advances in medicine made over the 150 years from 1860 to today. ‘We will look back on the way we practice health management today, and compare it to the use of leeches and blood-letting of earlier eras,’ he says, ‘And this has major implications for all the players, including governments, patients, pharma companies, and health care practitioners.’

Opportunity Pounds: The Future of IT in Health Care

Opportunity is not knocking in applications of IT to health care; it is pounding down the door. Ever since the Human Genome Project showed the value of using computers in medical research, new research techniques and new IT applications are starting to cause health care management and new breakthroughs to move at in silico speeds instead of in vitro speeds. Richard Worzel, best-selling author and one of today's leading futurists, surveys the landscape of tomorrow, and highlights:

• How health care will change over the next 25 years, and why it absolutely must;

• How a global medical warning system will gather instant-by-instant reports on the health status of close to 4 billions people, and what the implications for future research and data mining;

• The basic building block of such a system will be invisible in 25 years’ time, but is already in evidence today;

• The new kinds of research tools that must be used to deal with data overload that is rising by orders of magnitude every five years or so;

• And the emergence of help from surprising, even unexpected sources.

Richard compares the advances of the next 25 years with the advances in medicine made between 1860 and today. 'We will look back on the way we practice health management today, and compare it to the use of leeches and blood-letting of earlier eras,' he says, 'And this has major implications for all the players, including governments, patients, pharma companies, and health care practitioners.'

A Hands-on Future

The future for chiropractors offers both more opportunity, and less stability. In this intriguing and entertaining presentation, futurist Richard Worzel discusses the changes coming to the society in which we work, the massive transformations coming to health care generally, and how they will affect chiropractors both personally and professionally.

The cost of health care is ballooning as the baby boomers reach their mid-50's, causing convulsions in the way health care is practiced. New technologies will emerge, and alternative medicines are going to be accepted, sparking significant changes in the way people manage their health. Boomers in particular have a history of disregarding traditional medical practices and changing the way health management is applied. Many of these changes will play to the advantage of chiropractors, while others will cause them to re-assess and change the way they run their businesses. Meanwhile, governments will be experiencing extreme financial pressure because of the steadily expanding costs of traditional health care, with results that will bring both problems and opportunities to the profession. Join us in this intriguing and practical survey of the demographic, technological, and political forces that are going to change and affect chiropractic practice.

We Can't Handle the Truth: The Future of Health Care

The single greatest public policy issue of the next half century will be health care, as the aging baby boomers both live longer, and place ever-increasing strains on health care budgets and facilities. This has major implications for every aspect of our future life, but notably for the those who work in and with health care. Your jobs are going to be complicated by the explosion of knowledge emerging from genetics and molecular biology, the intrusion of IT into medicine in everything from imaging, to patient records, to foundational research, and from the steadily rising expectations of politicians, voters, and those in need of health care.

In this wide-ranging and provocative presentation, futurist Richard Worzel surveys the underlying demographic causes of the coming crisis, identifies the technologies that will offer novel or even revolutionary solutions to diseases and conditions that are currently untreatable, and describe the probable results, both in the politics of tomorrow, and in likely responses by public and private sector participants in the health care field. Participants will walk away with a big picture understanding of the issues that will need to be confronted, and how they may present themselves as challenges for health care workers, policy makers, and users of the system.

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